A Ray of Hope


This week while shopping for groceries in a busy store filled with after-Labor-Day customers, I noticed a tall, thin, elderly man with nothing in his basket except a dozen eggs, a gallon of milk, and a loaf of bread.

Lines were long and the noise deafening as most shoppers pushed carts overflowing with their purchases. Many were there with monthly paychecks waiting to be spent.

As I pulled into the line behind the gentleman, the woman ahead of him offered to let him ahead of her in line. Like mine, her cart was full.

At first he refused, obviously taught that ladies go first. But at her insistence he agreed and pushed his three items on the conveyor belt. She looked at me and winked. I mouthed a “thank you” to her for the kindness she had displayed.

With all the turmoil that seems to besiege us these days, it’s often difficult to remember any good left in the world. But God in His wisdom, likes to remind us of the bits of sunshine peeking through the darkness as we walk each day with Him. This incident reaffirmed my belief in the goodness that still exists in humanity, that there are indeed caring individuals who have more on their minds than themselves.

In God’s word, Jesus tells us in Mark 12:30-31: “ ‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ “This is the first commandment. And the second, like it is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Good words for all of us to follow.  Think what a better world this would be if we did.


2 Replies to “A Ray of Hope”

  1. Miralee Ferrell says: Reply

    Thank you for this reminder, Pat. I had something just the opposite happen at the store yesterday. A woman who was reaming out the checker as she rang up my one item, for telling her she needed to get in line rather than cut in front of me (which she insisted on doing) because there was an error on her receipt that she wanted fixed…NOW. I would have gladly given her my place in line, but the checker sweetly but firmly told her she needed to wait. So I kept quiet. As I gave the checker my money, the man behind me offered to let the woman go ahead of him. He only had 4 items. She wasn’t gracious, but stepped ahead of him, with a bare thank you, if that. She instantly started ranting at the checker at how unfair it was that she’d been made to wait when she’d already waited in another line, only to have that checker make a mistake. I felt horrible for the poor checker who was trying to be gracious, but being shouted at. I turned to the woman and calmly told her that we had all been waiting. That by trying to cut in line, she was making others wait longer, and that it works both ways. I have no idea if she really heard me or not. I hope it helped the checker a little, to know someone else understood and didn’t think she should get yelled at. I’m so glad to hear your story…there are still nice people in the world.

  2. We need more kindness and paying it forward than the growing culture of rudeness and selfishly motivated people. Thank you for supporting the checker. They take loads of abuse on every shift.

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