Today was my grocery shopping day at Wally World! It is our weekly trek to the big city of Durango. I used to do this chore by myself, but in recent times, we both have had health issues that make it difficult to do this alone, so my Dearly Beloved always goes with me. He dislikes this chore more than I do, for he is NOT a lover of shopping for anything! Because of his love, honor and respect for me and his desire to make certain I am safe at all times, he trudges along and is a great help! To make the trip more enjoyable, we always include our weekly date day in this trip! Sweet!
We always head prayerfully into Wally World wherever we are. We ask Father to bless our trip, use us and allow the essence of His Presence to change the atmosphere while we are in the store. Today was no different. We enjoyed meeting the Greeter at the door and blessing her and began to tackle our list. I took the lead and headed to the back of the store to the milk cooler. We came upon a very grey haired, frail gentleman in a power wheel chair wearing hearing aids and a portable oxygen tank. He had pulled his chair up to the milk case and was looking high and low for a certain item. Just so happened that the almond milk we wanted to remove from the case was in the same spot where he was looking. We patiently waited as other shoppers quickly moved between this gentleman and us, seemingly frustrated that he was in their way. We continued to wait exchanging a smile between the two of us and realizing that others were missing a great opportunity. You see, this elderly gentleman was wearing a cap that read ‘Proud to Have Served My Country – World War II Veteran.”
We continued to wait patiently and he continued his search for Chocolate Almond Milk. Finally, Rog stepped up to him, leaned down and asked, “Sir, is there something I can reach for you?” In a soft tone, the gentleman said, “Yes. I’d like one of those Chocolate Almond Milks on the top shelf.” Rog opened the cooler and filled the request. As the old man put the milk in the buggy on the front of his power chair, Rog bent down low to be certain that he could hear him. Rog said with tears, “Sir, thank you so much for your service. Where did you serve?” The old fellow perked up and said, “I served as a radio coordinator on Okinawa and Iwo Jima.”
“And you, son, are you a vet?”
“Yes, Sir. I served four years in the Air Force, but never in combat.”
The conversation continued for several minutes as Rog shared about losing his Dad during WW II in England. They talked about D-Day and the landing at Normandy in Europe. You could feel the closeness these two strangers shared at the dairy case in Wal Mart. I cried and wiped the tears as I watched the two shake hands for the longest time. The Holy Spirit had arrived on the scene and allowed us to experience the essence of Father’s presence. Walking away from our encounter we realized that Father’s love had just reached down and touched us all and that we were shopping for much more than groceries!