It started out as a trip to get me some new shirts. I have lost 20 lbs over the last two months (whoo!) and nothing I own except for my dashikis really fits now – and my dashikis are much too nice for everyday wear.
So we were heading out to get some clothes for me and Amy remembered that she needed to drop her car off at her nephew’s garage so he could work on it when we are away.
We get to the garage and Amy’s nephew is down in the dumps so we take him across the street to McDonald’s to buy him some sweet tea and lend a sympathetic ear.
Once he was feeling better and on his way home we headed out to Wal-Mart. I managed to find a couple of T-shirts and somehow survived the long lines at the cashier to emerge triumphantly out into the cool Virginia evening.
For some reason we decided to wander into Big Lots! We weren’t exactly sure why we wandered into Big Lots!, but after wandering around for a bit a woman stopped Amy and asked, “Do I know you?”
It turned out that this was a nurse who worked for one of Amy’s doctors. They chatted for a moment and then Amy remembered that her friend’s mother had been ill. Amy asked how things were going and the woman sadly informed us that her mother had passed.
“I am just at the point where I can say it.” She said with a quiet sob.
I quietly backed out the door and headed back into Wal-Mart. I sorted through the fresh flowers and found a nice little bouquet. I walked back and handed the flowers to Amy so that she could give them to her friend.
We left Big Lots! and started back to Manassas. By now I was a few hours late on my pain medication and the pain was hitting me hard. We were quiet as we drove into town.
We decided to stop at McDonald’s to get a couple of Dollar Menu cheeseburgers. When we got to the window to pay the cashier informed us that the lady in front of us had already paid for our food.
It would be easy to say that a free cheeseburger was some kind of karmic reward, but I think what happened tonight was much more mundane – and because of that, much more amazing – than a formulaic do good to get good scenario.
Tonight we took care of people. People we love and people we barely know. While we were doing that somebody else was caring for us. That is Christianity at its purest and most basic form. There was love.
This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
What a blessing to have that thought in our hearts and minds as we pack tonight for the long trip to Crisfield.
Over the rest of the week people from around the world will be gathering to share music and fellowship at the Crisfield Banjo Retreat. If you cannot join us this time around I hope that you will go out into your community to make music with love in your hearts.
Amy and Patrick Costello