Friday, December 24, 2010

The Christmas Spirit Is Still Alive

An amazing thing happened to us at Cracker Barrel a week or so ago...

As the hostess seated us at out table, I noticed a young man/ teenager at the table in front of us finishing up his dinner. I also noticed that he was looking a little longer at Anna than I thought was polite. As this happens more frequently than I would like to admit, I went back to my usual "let's not make eye-contact with anyone, lest I'll get my feelings hurt while they try to decipher what's wrong with my handicapped child" stance. The waitress came, took our order, brought our drinks, and our dinner continued as normal until...

The young man finished his dinner, and before he left, stopped by our table, knelt down and began to talk to my husband in a low, soft tone. He explained that Anna reminded him of someone that he had grown up with as a little boy, and though he didn't have much cash on him (only two dollars, actually), he asked us if we would take it and buy something she would like for Christmas with it. I jumped up from my chair and proceeded to embrace him in a death-hug (a signature move of mine). The only words I could utter were "Thank you! God bless you!" as I unsuccessfully choked back my tears.

I "happy cried," as Jamie Ruth calls it, through most of dinner and thanked God for the kindness, the mercy, the gentleness, and the compassion that was shown in this young man's actions. It was the best Christmas present I have ever received and I will never forget him for as long as I live. Thank you, young fellow in the navy pea coat. It's obvious that Santa, angels, and even Jesus can take on the appearance of hungry patrons this time of year!

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