Friday, January 2, 2015

The Visitation

They arrived just before we closed the office. They were a young couple. They entered the church office and asked if we took donations for the food bank. "Indeed, we do!" I replied. "We have a couple of boxes of food and some cash we'd like to donate," she said. "And I'd be happy to oblige you," I said.

Her husband went out to get the boxes of food from the car and she removed bills from her pocket and started counting, "One hundred, two hundred, three hundred..." and on she went. I held up my hand to stop her, to direct her into our contributions secretary's work space actually. "We'll let Ms Della help you," I said, "and she can provide you with a donation statement for tax purposes."

Her husband had returned with one of the two boxes of donated, non perishable food items and went for the other. He shortly returned with the second and I commented, "Great taste! I'm happy to see whole wheat pasta! That will surely bless some family." He smiled warmly and his wife walked back into the front office.

As quietly as they arrived, they departed. When it was all said and done, they had donated wonderful, newly purchased non perishable food items and given over one thousand dollars for the food bank.

Ms Della and I were certain we had entertained angels unaware! We affectionately called them Mary and Joseph!
Hebrews 13:2  Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.
What this young couple had done served as a reminder to me. That reminder is to give extravagantly! To give out of your "first fruits".

I can speak of the "first fruits" from experience. While we were working to raise our support to become missionaries, well meaning folks from our home church would bring us "care packages" of food. They meant well, but these items were brought out of their pantries and were virtually the left-overs as evidenced by the mealy bugs in the packages of dried goods. I don't mean to be cruel. I am being honest. Since we had farm animals, those items unsuitable for human consumption were fed to the chickens and hogs, which in turn then fed us.

From these lessons I learned well. Mary and Joseph's example reinforced that lesson.

Wherever they are this night, whatever it was in their lives that compelled them to give so extravagantly,  may our God and Father bless them, and bless them indeed!

Wishing you everyday grace, every single day!


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