A Stranger in the Dark

It had already been a long day and it wasn't over. Between newcasts Monday, I had an event to speak at and knew my dinner break would be taken. Driving back to the tv station at 9pm, I decided to swing in the drive-thru and pick up something quick and eat in the break room before the 10pm newscast. With food in the car, I pulled into the WLBT parking lot. BING! Someone sent me a text. With the parked car still running, I type out my response and gathered my belongings to head inside. Then someone tapped on my window and startled me. There standing before me was a stranger in the dark.

"Please don't shoot me, please don't shoot me, ma'am. I'm sorry I startled you. Please don't shoot me!" he said apologetically. "Can I help you?" I asked. He proceeded to tell me how the downtown Jackson soup kitchen was closed for the night and how he was trying to get to Meridian. "But I'm hungry," he said. "Well, how do you plan to get to Meridian?" I asked as I was convinced all he wanted was money. "I'm walking down here to the truck stop and gonna hitch a ride, but I'm hungry," he explained.

Well, I am, too, I thought. I looked at the unopened food I had just purchased, grabbed it and gave it to him through the window. "Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you! God bless you!" he said. And he walked away.

Before you give me "kuddos", I don't deserve them. I came very close to pulling out a couple of dollars and telling him to move on. And when that thought came in my head, I realized it was after 9pm, he had obviously walked a ways to get to Jefferson Street and there were no restaurants nearby. But I knew the Holy Spirit was watching me. What I did first determined what God would do second.

I've found myself lately praying Jeremiah 17:7-8: "Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. And it has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit." I tell the Lord every day: I devote my day to you. It's no longer mine but Yours. I will deliver your blessings whenever and wherever and to whomever You choose.

We're just God's delivery agents if you think about it. God is the ultimate giver. He arranged the encounter and the fast-food. I was just carrying it around! God deserves the credit for lovingly bringing me and a stranger together as the person God had in mind. The stranger was immediately swept up in a natural outpouring of profound gratitude to God for His mysterious and wonderful provision in remedying his hunger.

Each time you give to others, all of Heaven cheers you on as yet another downtrodden heart is filled to overflowing with God's care.