Good morning out there! I have so much to share with y'all. It has been at least ten days
since my last post. My heart is so full and I have so much to say. I asked the Lord
to help me, to guide me as I write this important story today. I will begin with some
of the easier stories - the ones that just come right out. If you've read very many of
my stories you know how my life moves in many different directions - and sometimes
all in the same day. This morning my title was, "The Tire Lady." I woke up and Jim
reminded me that I had to drive to Mereta, a small rural community about fifteen to
twenty miles east of San Angelo. My mission in Mereta was to get a new tire for the
skid steer. Jim had loaded up the completely ruined old tire in the back of my truck. He
also loaded up one of our son's tires for me to take to Discount Tire in San Angelo
after I got back from Mereta. Needless to say, Jim had been called to go and do some
welding repairs today. I got ready, drank a cup of coffee, made the bed, and then
I headed out. I realized that I needed to fill up with gas so I detoured back into town
and filled up my gas tank. I will get off track a little here because putting gas in my
truck reminded me of something I wanted to tell y'all about that happened last Sunday.
Jim and I were headed to Mass in separate vehicles because I had to stay and help
with the Ministry Fair that was going on after each Mass. I told Jim that I needed to
stop and put some gas in my truck and that I would see him in a little bit. I pulled up
next to the gas pumps and saw Jim walk over to my truck. He got out his debit card
then filled up my gas tank. I opened my door and thanked him. You know, it really is
the little things that mean so much. I'm perfectly capable of filling up my own gas
tank but I was all dressed up for Mass. My sweet husband, parked his truck and
filled up my truck and then we both drove to Sacred Heart. We parked and went into
the courtyard, signed in, grabbed a prayer book and went to one of the benches and
sat down to pray the pro-life rosary. Then we went to Mass together. I will get back
on track now but that story is something that I wanted to share. I want people to see
the positive, loving, caring, devoted aspects of marriage. In today's society we don't
hear enough about how awesome marriage can be!
Back to my "Tire Lady" saga - On the way back to San Angelo - to the Discount
Tire store in San Angelo - I called Janice, the lady I write about a lot when I'm
talking about the Sack Lunch Ministry. The story I tell her is the important part
of this whole rambling post. But before I tell you what I told her. I have to tell you
about Wednesday and Thursday to put this all in perspective.
For some reason I have felt really run down and tired during this whole 40 Days for
Life campaign. My energy level is just not what it used to be. But on a positive note -
It has been a blessing to see the faithful, devoted pro-life warriors come to the
courtyard and pray. We have some people that come almost everyday. We also have
new people who have joined our pro-life prayer vigil. All these devoted people are
such a blessing to me and more importantly to the unborn and their families. Their
voices united in prayer to speak up for the weakest among us is a powerful witness.
My friend and co-coordinator, Candi has spent countless hours in the courtyard. She
has been the one to really step in and take care of the day to day things that need to be
done. Candi shared with me how the Holy Spirit let her know that I needed additional
help. I'm so humbled and touched that she listened and so in awe when I think about
how much God loves us and knows us! I am beyond thankful because I am needed to
help with the Sack Lunch Ministry on a regular basis now.
This past Wednesday I was so tired that I was in my pajamas by 5:00 p.m. (I won't tell
you exactly what time because it was so early I'm kind of embarrassed to)
Jim came in from work and made some kind of comment like, "I see your settled in
for the night" something like that. I was curled up on the couch beneath a blanket and
drinking a hot cup of some kind of vitamin c plus extra stuff drink. I was sound asleep
by 7:30 p.m. I'm not sure what time I got up and went to bed but Jim was still
watching the World Series and I even slept through all the excitement. I kind of woke up
when I got into bed and I began to pray. I prayed for the homeless, the hungry, the
neglected, the unborn, my family - I prayed and prayed until I fell asleep. I woke up
Thursday morning and I was ready to go. I had a very busy morning and afternoon but
by 6:00 p.m. I was back in my PJs and curled up in the exact same spot on the couch
when Jim walked in - I got a look - he didn't say anything - but there was a look.
When he sat down in his rocking chair I got "the Jim lecture" about how I am wearing
myself out and I need to slow down, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah! But the lecture was in
a loving, worried about me kind of way. That night I prayed even more. Friday morning
I woke up and we went and walked about two and a half miles and then I got ready and
headed to the Sack Lunch Ministry.
NOW - FINALLY - this is the rest of my story - the most important part!
I called Janice on my way to Discount Tire and told her about something that happened
yesterday right after she and her husband left the Sack Lunch Ministry. We were all
busy getting the lunches together when a homeless man walked in at about 10:20 a.m. to
see if we were already handing out the lunches. We usually don't start handing them
out until 11:00 a.m. but if we have them ready we don't mind giving them our earlier.
This very nice and humble man is one of our regular guys. It was a little cool outside
and he asked if we had any coffee. I asked David, Janice's husband if he would please
make me a pot of coffee and he said, "Poof, you are a pot of coffee" I had to throw that
in there because David is one of a kind and we all love him - he is really great with
everyone who comes in to get a lunch. David made the coffee and one of the ladies
gave the nice and humble man a cup of coffee with sugar packets and mini moo creamer.
I walked into the kitchen and Janice and I went into the pantry to check out all of the
supplies. We found some cookies and decided to give them out. She and I discussed
the menu and supply list for the upcoming week and then they (Janice and David)
left. I walked out into the cafeteria to put the individually wrapped cookies on the
table. I saw that the man was through eating and asked if he would like some cookies.
He replied that yes, he would. While he was getting his cookies I asked if he would like
me to warm up his coffee. I went and refilled his coffee cup and grabbed some more
sugar packets and walked back to where he was sitting. I handed him his coffee and he
looked at me and said, "Where is your better half?" I was taken by surprise and I looked
at him and said, "He is doing some work at home but I will see him at the noon Mass."
The man nodded and repeated the word, Mass and then he thanked me and left.
I realized right then that Jesus, Himself was right there in our midst but I had to let it all
sink in. I kept going over it all in my head. That man doesn't know that one of the
endearments I use for Jim is, "My better half" he didn't simply ask where my husband
was? He asked "where is your better half?" I told Janice to tell David that he had made
coffee for Jesus! I thought back to my prayers and my weariness and Janice's upcoming
knee surgery and I told her that what we're doing at the Sack Lunch Ministry is what
we are supposed to be doing. I felt like God wanted us to know that He sees
our struggles and in spite of it all, we are still following the path that He has laid
out for us. (What a gift! Why did I have to think about it? Why couldn't I see that it
was Him, really Him right at that moment? Why didn't I fall to my knees and say,
I am not worthy?)
Janice said that she keeps thinking about this hymn we sing during Mass,
"Open the eyes of my heart, Lord - Open the eyes of my heart,
I want to see You, I want to see You"
Janice and I both talked about how blessed we are by this ministry. We will both pray
that we continue to, "See Jesus in the face of those we serve."
I know that this has been a super-long post but I want to close with a verse from
another hymn we sing at Mass.
The Servant Song
Will you let me be your servant, let me be as Christ to you;
Pray that I may have the grace to let you be my servant, too.
Bye for now, Sharla