The Open Sleeping Bag

As the storm set in, I scurried quickly to get under cover, seeking refuge inside the store from the icy cold wind. On my way in, an open sleeping bag on the sidewalk caught my eye. Empathy enveloped me, as I pictured someone having to endure the freezing cold temperatures there.

Once inside, my thoughts shifted to my shopping. I had come in for three items, so a cart was not in the plan. As it turned out, I found myself juggling many things, as I succumbed to this and that. My arms were full! I got in line to check-out and realized the guy in front of me had a shopping cart that was overflowing with Dollar Tree items! Sigh. Its going to be awhile…

As I stood waiting for my turn, I secretly hoped the guy with the mountain of stuff would say, please my dear kind lady… go ahead of me. 😅 I snapped back to reality when a man caught my attention. He was all bundled up, cap and coat, and was apologizing profusely to the cashier for losing the bathroom key. In spite of it, he had such a smile on his face and sparkle in his humble gentle eyes. The open sleeping bag…

As the minutes rolled by, I started losing my hold on the items in my arms and they began slipping and dropping onto the floor around me. I would pick one up only to lose three more! Just as I considered leaving my spot in the line that now trickled down an aisle, I heard a voice from behind say, “Let me help you!” It was him…

He quickly handed me a basket to drop my many tumbling items into. He had such a sweet spirit about him and heartwarming smile. His kindness touched my heart! Here was a man who was truly having challenges in his life, and yet, here he was, the one reaching out to help me. Such a beautiful example of how we are to live. He wasn’t thinking about himself and how he was down-and-out. He was focused on those around him and he was making a difference, even at that very moment, in my life. He had the Christ-like behavior the Bible exhorts us to exemplify! Oh to have more of that, meaning less of me, and more of Christ!

As it turned out, another cashier was eventually called up and I was next. I breezed through the line and as I grabbed my bag to head out, our eyes locked…

There he stood, in his line, with a peaceful grin upon his face. I smiled and waved as I thanked him again. And then, the thought and scripture found in Hebrews 13:2 came to mind, “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels.”

I don’t know if he was an angel or a random homeless guy the Lord used to touch my life. I will never know that truth this side of heaven. What I do know is that he was kind, helpful, and he was not thinking about himself, but others. Because he didn’t have much to give, yet he knew how to give of himself, he really made an impact on me!

🙏🏻Prayer: Lord, may we be mindful of such examples of Christ-like behaviors around us. Teach us to be giving of ourselves, putting others needs before our own. Thank You, Jesus. We praise You, Lord! God, You are so Good! 🙌🏻🕊🙌🏻🕊

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