Being Jesus on the side of the road…
This afternoon I was on my way back to the office and with no thinking whatsoever (no comment necessary), I passed the office building and kept right on driving. I got to the intersection of California Avenue and Hwy. 9 and there was a car stalled in the middle of that intersection on Hwy. 9. The young lady looked frantic, and she also looked familiar. As I turned left onto Hwy. 9 to go who knows where because I was supposed to be going to the office, I got a close look at her and realized she is married to a guy who works with Clay. He and I had done a mini pre-marital counseling session with them a couple of years ago and Clay performed their wedding ceremony. I had not met her before the session, and haven’t seen her since the wedding. She moved down here from Michigan to marry this guy, and neither of them have family here. Just setting the stage for you, now back to today’s story. When I realized it was her I took a quick left turn back into the Li’l Cricket parking lot, jumped out of my car and dodged oncoming traffic to get to her. (Okay, I over dramatized that. I waited for the traffic light to stop the traffic and I jogged across. But dodging traffic sounds much more heroic.) Why would I do that? Why would I even take the time in 90 degree temps to help her?? Two reasons. One, she looked absolutely frantic because she was stalled in the middle of the intersection; and two, Clay had told me that they recently had a baby. I assumed that new baby was in the stalled car with no air conditioner, AND was a sitting target in the middle of a very busy four lane highway. When I got to her car she had her back turned to me so I knocked gently on her window. It took her a minute to decide to look at me she was so upset. I could tell by her look that she did not recognize me – maybe it was my sunglasses, maybe it was the misfit in location, or maybe I have that easy-to-forget face. She rolled her window down and I said, “Do you remember me? My husband performed your wedding ceremony!” She threw her hand to her mouth and teared up, jumped out of the car and thanked me and thanked me and thanked me – and let me open the backseat, grab her little newborn - car seat and all, and scurry back across the highway to my car that was parked safely in the convenient store parking lot. I sat with the baby (I forgot to ask his name) while she made calls to her husband and for roadside assistance, and waited with her for her husband to arrive. They both thanked me again and again, I told her it was great to see her and hopefully we can get together under less stressful circumstances, and I drove to the office. When I told Clay about it he said, “Did you invite her to church? I’ve been working on the husband.” “Nope,” I answered. “I was too busy being Jesus on the side of the road.”
I probably should’ve invited her to church. I probably should’ve quoted her a scripture or two. Maybe I should’ve even offered to pray with her and for her. But I didn’t. I was too busy being Jesus on the side of the road! I chatted and joked and tried to keep her mind off the situation, as she was clearly as shaken as if she had been in an accident. My purpose was just to calm her down and keep her company until hubby could arrive. I think I did a pretty good job just being Jesus on the side of the road to that young mommy. Coincidence that I passed the office mindlessly? I don’t think so. I hope Jesus was pleased with His representative.
“‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’’ The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me’” (Matthew 25:37b-40).