When I first saw him walking along the road, it didn’t seem completely unusual. We were at a major interstate exit. He had a large backpack, dirty ripped up clothes, and a dog on a leash. I thought to myself, “I wish it were easier to stop and give him one of our blessing bags.” I drove on.
The next day I was driving home from picking up Andrew from school. It was lunchtime. He was tired and cranky. I saw the man with dirty, ripped up clothes, oversized backpack and dog on a leash. This time he was further into suburbia. I thought to myself, “That’s the same man I saw yesterday. I wish I could stop and give him a blessing bag. But that wouldn’t be wise with Andrew in the car. Plus he’s tired and cranky.” The man wasn’t walking this time. He was resting under a shade tree in front of my veternarian’s office. I drove on.
The next day I dropped off 5 kids at school and raced home to meet a newspaper interviewer at my home. I needed to brush my teeth, apply some lipstick, and make myself somewhat presentable. I should probaby have some coffee and muffins ready, clean the toilet seat. And while I have 30 minutes in the car I will go ahead and rehearse my talk I’m giving in 2 weeks on seeing the messages God has for us in the everyday, ordinary moments of life.
Then I saw him. The man with dirty, ripped up clothes, oversized backpack, and dog on a leash. This time we weren’t at a major interstate exit. We weren’t just a little further into suburbia. We had entered the bubble. The bubble where I live, where sidewalks are lined with trees and children roam carefree. Where homeless men aren’t walking.
My brain stopped working. I can’t explain what happened but I pulled my car right over on the side of the road in the middle of traffic making its way through a construction area. The man was walking far off the side of the road, in the middle of someone’s yard.
I grabbed a blessing bag out of the side of the door, grabbed my wallet and took all the cash I had, threw it in the bag and tossed my wallet far into the backseat out of sight. I rolled down my window and beckoned the man to my car. (Mom and Linda- I’m sorry- I know you who love me are screaming at your computers at my ignorance….like any good mom and mom in law would be doing).
He approached with a smile on his face, showing 1 top tooth among a row of missing others. His face was dark and dirty. But he had a smile on his face and said, “I’m sorry.” Why did he apologize to me? Because he interuppted my morning or could have been the cause of my mini-van getting rear-ended?
Leaning towards the window, I passed the bag to him, looked him in the eyes, and said, “God bless you.” He smiled back, with what appeared to be joy in his eyes. “God bless you too, ma’am.”
The car behind me was baffled I’m sure. He never tried to maneuver around me as if he knew I needed that grace in that moment. As I guided my car off the grass onto the road, I broke down. Trembling I realized God wanted to meet with me. And God wanted to meet with that man. And in ways that only He can, He is in constant pursuit of our affection while He connects us one to another.
I was in my car practicing a talk on seeing God in the everyday. Preaching a message of seeing God’s messages for us when we slow down and have eyes to see Him. God needed to teach me my own lesson right back at my heart in that exact very moment. I had missed Him the last 2 times He tried to intersect my day because it wasn’t convenient for me. Thank God He doesn’t give up on me.
God is in our everyday moments. When it looks like we are just skipping along our normal routine, God is there. Waiting on us.