God Bless Our Veterans & Thank You Jesus for YOUR great gift
At the grocery store, I observed an old veteran with a shopping list. His careworn face crinkled at the edges of his mouth.
His eyebrows knit together as he carefully found certain items and then proceeded to cross them off his list. He was being quite judicious about checking prices. The hat he sported denoted “infantry,” but I couldn’t see all the words because of all the many pins.
I walked up to him and stuck out my hand thanking him for his service. A little embarrassed, he shyly mumbled, “It was a long, long time ago in ‘6l-’64.”
With a friendly smile and a slight nod of my head, I thanked him just the same, while making sure to squeeze his hand firmly.
What do you know? This same gentleman ended up in line behind me at the checkout. When it was his turn, I noticed that he began selecting things to put back.
I had already told the cashier that I would be picking-up his groceries so the checker included everything in his order. Moving quietly behind the guy, I reached over and stuck my credit card in the reader.
The cashiers told him “Merry Christmas,” but he caught me and said, “You didn’t have to do that! My wife won’t believe this! She isn’t gonna believe this!”
I said quite loudly, “You didn’t have to serve our country either but you DID and I appreciate it immensely!
People in line began saying, “Thank you and Merry Christmas!” He was notably moved to tears.
I tried to be sneaky but he caught me and gave me a huge bearhug. He gulped and whispered “thank you” in my ear. I whispered back, “God Bless you”.
People were paying respect and attention to him that I’m sure was a long time in coming.
The respect and the attention were probably better Christmas presents to him than the groceries.
It was late that Christmas Eve, and I had not planned to go to the store at all! As I was driving by, I felt a familiar tug on the inside to park and to go inside. My purchase was only something trivial and I wondered why I had come.
It wasn’t until I was leaving that I realized why I had been sent.
I believe that God expects each one of us to be instant-in-season. He provides all the cues we need in order for us to figure out what our part is to be at that moment. No, it isn’t always immediately apparent, easy or convenient. Jesus set a really good example for us by laying down his life and taking on our humanity.
He did for us what we could not do for ourselves. He manifested His great love toward us and then told us to go and do likewise.
Christmas is most certainly one of those times when we can let Jesus’ love shine through us to others . . . and to do for them what they may not be able to do for themselves.