Remember the scene in a Christmas Carol where Mr. Scrooge gets to look from afar in on the joy and the blessings of others? Remember how the ghost takes him and lets him observe the lives of others? Mr. Scrooge gets to see the ways people are blessed with little and with much and then he finds a change of heart and blesses them all at the end with gifts?” Ok, well tonight wasn’t about Mr. Scrooge, actually it was quite the opposite because tonight’s story didn’t end up with Mr. Scrooge being the hero of the story. Tonight, I along with about 15 others got to see what happens when we choose to Obey and allow God to be the hero instead of us. It was incredible! Let me explain…
I took my daughter to dance and like I always do, I find a place to write. I decided I wanted breakfast tonight and thought I might check out Waffle House. Because I get to spend a good amount of time at the table, I try to be very sensitive to not take a table away from a server. So, I drove up to Waffle House and got out to see how full it was, there was one booth left and a family of 4 had just walked up behind me. I politely excused myself and got back in my car. I decided to drive down the road to Cracker Barrel but it was packed as well, so I returned to Waffle House to see if any tables had cleared out.
When I arrived there were 2 or 3 empty tables, so I went in and spread out my laptop and proceeded to write and eat. The family of 4 that followed me in the first time had just finished and were paying their bill and then they headed out. A simple dad, mom and 2 boys all full and well behaved.They were kind, unassuming and actually quite quiet. A few minutes passed and the waitress, Ms. Suzie went to clear the table. Ms. Suzie got really excited when she found 3 envelopes left on the table, “to our server”, “to the cook” , “to the cashier” was written on each one. Ms. Suzie handed one to Ms. Judy, the cook and Mr. John the cashier as she began to open her own.
Ms. Suzie started crying and screaming as one hundred-dollar bill after another fell from her envelope. There was $600.00 in there. She cried and kept repeating” I am not supposed to even be here. I was called in last-minute.” Ms. Suzie’s story is that she is scheduled to have a MRI next week and it will cost her $500.00 that she doesn’t have. She also didn’t have any money to buy her grand baby a present for Christmas. Now she can do both. The family had no way of knowing this, but God did.
Ms. Ann opened her envelope and found a crisp clean one hundred-dollar bill. She looked at me and said ” I can now pay my light bill and keep the lights on at my house”. She was helping to raise her 2 grandsons and one was sitting across from me watching all this unfold.
The cashier, John said that he could now make his car payment so he could drive to work. His mother had brought him tonight.
As each one’s eyes filled with tears of disbelief, shock, joy and gratefulness each one stood there and gave God all the glory and all the praise. I heard phrases like, “God is good all the time”, “God knows our needs”, “God is never late”, ” I have the best God” “… “Glory to God” “Thank you Jesus” Only once was the question asked, “Did anyone know their names?” No one knew this family, no one knew their names and what was so amazing from a bystanders perspective was that it truly didn’t matter, because they saw this gift as a direct provision from God. HOW INCREDIBLE!
So, you have this family who makes a choice to be generous, but listens carefully to hear God’s direction and when they do, they obey. This sweet family made a choice to obey immediately. God used their obedience to directly fulfill some real needs in people who would give Him all the glory, but it didn’t stop there because the 3 chose to praise God publicly. The young boy was able to see adults giving God praise and thanks, I was tremendously blessed as well as was every other filled booth in that restaurant. God’s name rang out tonight all because someone made a choice to obey. Obedience breads blessings, even at Waffle House.
What was my take away? I realized that the family who left the gift will never know the impact of their obedience. They simply obeyed. They impact was so wide and the blessings overflowed to so many different people, including the ones who read this. God is so good like that. He can take an action from one person and multiply the lesson, impact and influence for His kingdom. I may never know the impact of my actions or words, but regardless I have to choose to obey and trust God to take care of the rest.
Lord may we choose to walk so closely to you that we bless others just by our relationship with You.
(all names have been changed)