Silently, I prayed for guidance to do the right thing. My heart wanted to help him out, but my logic was trying to overrule. My husband had been unemployed for 8 months. I really didn’t need any financial burden, no matter how minor. I reasoned that if I gave the guy sitting in my office chair a break, then I had to give EVERYBODY a break.
He walked into my office to make an appointment for an eye exam. I was immediately blessed by his cordial, sweet demeanor. This guy totally destroyed my assumption about people who have been locked up for a few years and only recently received freedom to be gruff and un-mannered, with a victim or blame mentality. He was easygoing and I truly enjoyed our conversation. He spoke of gratefulness to be in The Foundry’s ReEntry program.
After finishing the necessary paperwork, he mentioned needing help getting a copy of his birth certificate. I explained his options, all requiring a little cash. I offered to use my credit card to order from the website if he paid me the cash. Reluctantly, he pulled out a $20 bill and offered it to me. It was all the money he had, but the birth certificate was necessary, so he didn’t want to wait. I filled out the online order form and entered my credit information. The total cost was $20 higher than what I thought, and it was too late to retract the order.
I breathed a prayer for guidance. Even though it was only $20 more for me to pay, that day at that time was more than I could afford. However, I felt peace about telling him he didn’t have to pay me until the birth certificate arrived. He was so grateful, thanking me time and again.
As I walked him out to the lobby, my spirit smiled because I knew that when the time came for me to give him the document, I wasn’t going charge him the full amount (partly because I should have noticed the extra shipping charge prior to completing the transaction, but mostly because I felt the Holy Spirit say “It’s ok. Do this for him”.) I knew God would cover the $20 it cost me to help this gentleman; either through actual money or by being blessed for being obedient. I got a little giddy as I pictured how grateful he was going to be when I finally would get the opportunity to tell him that he only had to pay me $27!
I went about my day and didn’t give it any more thought. Two days later a family member came for a visit and handed me a $20 bill, saying, “I just found this out in your yard on the way to your door.”
At first I thought how weird it was that money was in my yard. Do I have a money tree that I didn’t know about? My second thought was, “Wow! God just did one of those coin-in-the-mouth-of-the-fish miracles!”
“….So go down to the lake and throw in a line. Open the mouth of the first fish you catch, and you will find a large silver coin. Take it and pay the tax for both of us.” Matthew 17:27
“Jesus paid the price…and I get to keep the change!”~anonymous
Director of Social Services