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Do Unto Others...


He was driving home one evening, on a two lane country road. Work in this
small Midwestern community, was almost as slow as his beat up Pontiac, but
he never quit looking. Ever since the factory closed, he'd been unemployed,
and with winter raging on, the chill had finally hit home.

It was a lonely road. Not very many people had a reason to be on it, unless
they were leaving town. Most of his friends had already left. They had
families to feed and dreams to fulfill. But he stayed on. After all, this
was where he buried his mother and father. He was born here and he knew the

He could go down this road blind, and tell you what was on either side, and
with his lights not working, which came in handy. It was starting to get
dark and light snow flurries were coming down. He'd better get a move on.

You know, he almost didn't see the old lady, stranded on the side of the
road. But even in the dim light of day, he could see she needed help. So he
pulled up in front of her Mercedes and got out. His Pontiac was still
sputtering when he approached her.

Even with the smile on his face, she was worried. No one had stopped to help
for the last hour or so. Was he going to hurt her? He didn't look safe, he
looked poor and hungry. He could see that she was frightened, standing out
there in the cold.

He knew how she felt. It was that chill which only fear can put in you. He
said, "I'm here to help you ma'am. Why don't you wait in the car where it's
warm? By the way, my name is Bryan,"

Well, all she had was a flat tire, but for an old lady, that was bad enough.
Bryan crawled under the car looking for a place to put the jack, skinning
his knuckles a time or two.

Soon he was able to change the tire. But he had to get dirty and his hands
hurt. As he was tightening up the lug nuts, she rolled down the window and
began to talk to him. She told him that she was from St. Louis and was only
just passing through. She couldn't thank him enough for coming to her aid.
Bryan just smiled as he closed her trunk.

She asked him how much she owed him. Any amount would have been all right
with her. She had already imagined all the awful things that could have
happened had he not stopped. Bryan never thought twice about the money. This
was not a job to him. This was helping someone in need, and God knows there
were plenty who had given him a hand in the past.

He had lived his whole life that way, and it never occurred to him to act
any other way. He told her that if she really wanted to pay him back, the
next time she saw someone who needed help, she could give that person the
assistance that they needed, and Bryan added, "And think of me." He waited
until she started her car and drove off. It had been a cold and depressing
day, but he felt good as he headed for home, disappearing into the twilight.

A few miles down the road the lady saw a small cafe. She went in to grab a
bite to eat, and take the chill off before she made the last leg of her trip
home. It was a dingy looking restaurant. Outside were two old gas pumps. The
whole scene was unfamiliar to her. The cash register was like the telephone
of an out of work actor, it didn't ring much.

Her waitress came over and brought a clean towel to wipe her wet hair. She
had a sweet smile, one that even being on her feet for the whole day
couldn't erase. The lady noticed that the waitress was nearly eight months
pregnant, but she never let the strain and aches change her attitude. The
old lady wondered how someone who had so little could be so giving to a
stranger. Then she remembered Bryan.

After the lady finished her meal, and the waitress went to get change for
her hundred-dollar bill, the lady slipped right out the door. She was gone
by the time the waitress came back. She wondered where the lady could be,
then she noticed something written on the napkin under which was four 100

There were tears in her eyes when she read what the lady wrote. It said:
"You don't owe me anything, I have been there too. Somebody once helped me
out, the way I'm helping you. If you really want to pay me back, here is
what you do: Do not let this chain of love end with you,"

Well, there were tables to clear, sugar bowls to fill, and people to serve,
but she never stopped thinking about the lady. That night when she got home
from work and climbed into bed, she was thinking about the money and what
the lady had written.

How could the lady have known how much she and her husband needed it? With
the baby due next month, it was going to be hard She knew how worried her
husband was, and as he lay sleeping next to her, she gave him a soft kiss
and whispered soft and low, "Everything's gonna be all right. I love you,

We are never prepared for what we expect.

BE WITH ALL OF YOU.  2 Corinthians 13:13


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