Each year I take vacation in Virginia (my hometown), and for the past two years I’ve driven alone. Every year is always interesting with family and not exactly what I anticipate. So I make adjustments to try to avoid any unnecessary drama. Never works! But it does help to be in control of how I navigate my goings and comings, thus the reason for driving. One year I rode the train and I ended up coming back early. On each occasion I tell myself that I am not doing this again. Somehow I keep going back in spite of the stress/mileage that it puts on my body/car. This year when I told my longtime girlfriends during dinner one night, that maybe I’d come every two years, their response was, “You have to come every year because we love you and look forward to this time with you.” They really blessed my heart because up until that moment, I was truly convinced there is no need to go through this every year for such little satisfaction.
With the miles ahead of me from Virginia to South Carolina I had plenty time to think. I am the type of person who sees God in all things. What may seem like a chance encounter for others can be a divine appointment for me. When I stopped at the Subway to get a sandwich before checking into my hotel for the evening in Fayetteville, I saw a gentleman sitting under a tree in the parking lot with food and a drink. Because it was extremely hot I asked him if he was waiting for someone. He said no. While I was getting my food I kept thinking about him and wondered if he was homeless. When I returned to my car I asked him if he was homeless. I explained that I wanted to know but wasn’t sure how to ask. He said he is homeless, and I replied, “My reason for asking is to give you something,” and I did. Maybe it’s not about me! The following morning after checking out of the hotel, I visited my usual Dollar Tree. After browsing for a spell I get in line to pay for my items. There is an older lady behind me and God presses upon my heart to pay for her stuff. As I finished paying for my items I look around and the lady has disappeared, so I start to look for her. Two registers down I walk up to her as she begin to pay and I tell her that God told me to pay for hers. She was happy and thankful. She said she is a Christian, and that happens to her all the time and she returns the favor to others. We parted ways and she said, “Be blessed and have a safe trip.” A lot of what we do and the encounters that we have are not about us. Maybe my trip was about the homeless man. I don’t know when the last time someone has spoken to him or treated him like a human being. Maybe my trip was about the older lady at the Dollar Tree. Although she had the money to pay for herself, I won’t ever know what that meant to her to have someone else pay. That may have been the day that she needed to trust God a little more for her finances. Who knows? Maybe it’s not about me! So I guess if the Lord willing and the creek don’t rise I will be in Richmond, Virginia again next year.