I cannot count just how many times in my life, when I was reaching a mental/emotional low point, I was delivered from those depths by a blessing in disguise. In recent years, those deliverances have been multiplied ten fold. Faith is an amazing thing, and it seems that just when it is about to weaken and fade, there is a gift on the horizon, delivered just in time for a restoration of that faith. The gift is always hard to see at first, but when you accept it (faith?), you are rewarded.
I was working on my second bad day. Nothing had gone wrong, but the insanity of the world in general was wearing me down. Physically I wasn’t feeing very well, but it was my heart (not the organ) rather than my body that was really hurting. My life was seemingly meaningless, and it was “meaning less”, each and every day. I felt I was one step above a vegetable.
I woke around 5:30 a.m. and decided since I had nothing else on my docket, I would get dressed and head out to the 24 hour Walgreens, and buy a few small necessities. Maybe just getting in the car would improve my mental condition. It did not. I arrived at Walgreens and almost decided not to go in. I mean, I’ve been in many a Walgreens in my life and while they are very handy stores, never once have they improved upon my life, or even my attitude. Just the same, there was something tugging at me from the inside out. I felt I needed to go inside that store, although I could see no reason why.
I walked into the store, grabbed a shopping cart, and selected my items, and decided, I must be crazy! I mean, this is just another Walgreens! As I headed to the counters there was one customer at each counter with a clerk for each one. I thought I’d look around while they finished with their business, but just as I turned around both clerks finished their jobs, so I proceeded. It was like the store had emptied completely. Except for one clerk. I continued to the check out counter. My first impression of the clerk was good gosh, this guy appears to be a weirdo. He stood about 6 ft 4 inches at 280 pounds and would not look me in the eye. I began putting my items on the counter and said hello. After about a five second delay, he said hi, without looking at me. I began to speak again and he started talking about the old Kohl’s Food Store that was just torn down about a mile away, but would not look me in the eye. Finally it hit me, he was autistic. Large, mid 40s, black, and unable to look anyone in the eye. Yet he worked a job, and I am just betting, was great at that job. We talked for a long time, me looking him in the eye, and him looking into the distance. I got the whole story of the history of Walgreens in the area, as well as the names of every manager this city has ever had. His memory was incredible. He talked in an even tone, but still with enthusiasm. He never looked me in the eye, or smiled. He understood his job, and I do believe, may have been a math wizard. When I first met him, I believed that he was at the very least, of an extremely low IQ. I now suspect, that he may be brilliant. He may be the “least weird” person I have met in the past three years. Honest, straightforward, gentle, filled with simple human decency. You could feel it. He also was something else that even he never realized…..he was a teacher.
First impressions are usually wrong, and he was a reminder of that. He was delivered to me as a gift, and my faith was once again restored. I only hoped and I prayed (literally), that somehow in some small way, I left something of me behind that he could use as well.
God sends us little (and big) reminders when we need it. He will take care of us, bring us back on tract, if we will have faith.
God Bless and have a great day, Wayne