Meeting Samaritan Sam

I have a confession. I’m not entirely “with it” today. In fact, I thought it was Monday. It’s Friday. I plead “stay at home Mom” defense.  At some point in the day I won’t know what day it is. “ Monday, Tuesday, Thursday?” One thing is for sure; it is time to go to the mattresses.

godfather go to the mattresses

 Either way, this Monday/Friday morning was the day to head to the post office with two large boxes. The moment I carried the two large boxes to the car I realized it would be a struggle to carry the boxes and the baby simultaneously. At that moment I prayed, “Lord, please send someone to hold the door when I arrive at the post office.”

As I pulled up to the post office and felt the weary drizzle fall, I bundled the baby into his carseat and did a strange dance to try to get both packages securely in my arms while holding the baby safely. I finally managed, holding the smaller package steady with my chin.

gus gus corn

With a gentle click of a shutting van door, I began to carefully march toward the post office doors and repeat my prayer for help.

Three men walked out of the 8 glass post office doors. The first hurried to the car where his wife was waiting. I doubt he saw me. The second man was in his late 20s, not dressed for the weather and looking somewhat preoccupied. He looked me over and maintained his course, avoiding eye contact. My heart sank a little. I missed Texas—or rather, Texan men who hold the door open.

As I shifted my gaze back toward the large doors, my brown boots now touched sidewalk. Halfway there. (Oh, OH! Living on a prayer!)

That’s when I saw him. A solidly athletic looking man, crowned with white hair, was gazing at me with a furrowed brow. It is the gaze of a man who is witnessing something that in his mind is not right. I see this expression most often when people remain seated or do not remove their hats for the Star Spangled Banner.  He gently rushed over and extended his arms with a polite, “Here. Let me take those.”

Peeking over the packages I could see “Sam” stitched onto his well-made navy jacket. If only I’d had a bell.

 sam

 I looked up into Samaritan Sam’s wise and weathered face until I found dull, blue eyes. I gave him my best smile.

I was just praying you’d be here,” I said. “Thank you so much!

He asked if I had the baby and proceeded to hold the doors and walk with me through the foyer, explaining that he had a little time to kill. From his brisk walk and purposeful walk, I am not so sure.  I was a little more surprised when he accompanied me down the long white corridors to the familiar, winding line of the post office. Miraculously, there was no one there. He gently set my packages down as I thanked him for being an answer to prayer today. Without much expression, he wished me a good day and walked off.

Samaritan Sam made my day. He was aware of his surroundings, including others with their hands full (which he didn’t say to me, God bless him.) He didn’t assess how much time it would take to walk with me or carry my heavy load for a few minutes. He probably didn’t think God sent him; by all accounts he is probably just a good old boy in that neatly parked truck.

After paying for my packages to be sent I walked out and yet another weathered veteran held the door. Two men gave me a ray of sunshine in a rainy day that feels like a Monday. Sometimes just having someone encourage us on our way is being Jesus to someone.  Samaritan Sam was startled to hear that I had prayed he would arrive. He probably just wanted to mail something before getting his coffee and going to work, but to me it was a divine appointment he showed up for and chose to keep. That’s what makes a Friday that feels like a Monday turn into a Sunday.

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