So you won’t believe what happened to me at Costco. To be more specific, standing in line to get a hot dog at Costco.
Remember that scene in “It’s A Wonderful Life” where George Bailey gets rescued from bankruptcy? When his community and friends rally around him and give him the money to save his life. Remember that touching moment? Okay, so hold that thought. Hold it. Hold it.
It was one of those days. Those days where everything that could go wrong was going wrong and in order to keep it together I just kept muttering, “I may be hard pressed but I am not crushed.” over and over, again.
On this not so great day my mom, having perfect timing, came over and deciding to make things just a little better pronounced we should hop over to Costco where she could treat me to lunch and a little shopping. Hebrew National hot dogs, smothered in ketchup, mustard, and relish, accompanied by a diet coke, in my world equals a bit of happiness. Yes folks, sometimes that’s all it takes.
So there we were, my mom and I waiting patiently in line as I was getting really excited because my turn to bite into a hot dog was approaching very quickly. Finally we were up and we placed our order. The grand total came out to $3.28, my mom pulled out her debit card and before you knew it all heck broke loose.
“We don’t accept debit cards M’am.”, the cashier said with a smile.
My smile on the other hand completely evaporated. Because I knew two things.
1. My mom had zero cash and neither did I.
2. My mom freaks out and gets embarrassed easily and I knew “flusterville” was right around the corner.
“What do you mean you don’t accept debit cards, you can’t be serious, that’s all I have and…” her breathing was starting to become a bit labored.
“I am as serious as a heart attack lady.” he said, still smiling.
Important note here: My mom was born and raised in Peru and some sayings she just doesn’t understand.
“What do you mean a heart attack, Huh? What Gerita? What is he saying? Oh my gosh, let me see how much change I have, Oh my gosh!” Her voice was cracking.
And with one frantic move she pulled out her coin purse and out spilled all of her change onto the counter. Which mostly consisted of pennies and a few dimes.
Mind you, its 12:00 in the afternoon, there is a huge line behind us, there is a huge line on either side of us, and we are now becoming the center of attention on a very hot day. Then out of nowhere I see this hand coming toward our pile of change with a quarter in it. This blond woman from the line next to us was donating a quarter to our cause. After that the lady behind her dropped in a quarter and said, “We can’t let you go hungry; its lunch and you should have your hot dog.”
All of a sudden I was in “It’s A Wonderful Life” and all these strangers began happily pitching in and within minutes and a few quarters and dimes later, we made it to 3 bucks! Without missing a beat, the still surprisingly happy cashier said he would put in the last .38¢ , completing what we owed.
Do not withhold good from those who deserve it,
when it is in your power to act.
This proverb came alive to me on that one Costco day. Many times we are going to find ourselves with the ability, the power, to do good for someone else. It could be making an encouraging phone call, offering someone a ride, helping someone who is lost, visiting someone in the hospital or something as simple as donating a quarter to some strange girl and her mom so they can eat a hot dog at Costco.
God is telling us in His word, that when it is in your power to act,