“Are you going grocery shopping today?” my husband, Roy asked when I picked up the telephone.
“I plan to,” I answered.
Thanksgiving was only a couple days away. Everyone in our family would be coming to our house. My funds were limited, therefore my box of coupons awaited me in the car. I knew I had to be creative in my shopping that day. I had to stretch every dollar.
For a few seconds, Roy sat silently on the other end of the line. “Why do you ask?” I uttered, fearing what he might say.
“Nancy, there’s a family with a half dozen kids that will not have anything to eat for Thanksgiving. The little one is only five-years-old.”
“So what are you saying?” I whispered.
“While you’re at the store could you possibly buy something for them?” Roy’s words echoed in my heart. GroceriesŠ a five-year-oldŠ eight in the familyŠ My head began to spin thinking about the fifty dollars I had reserved for our family’s Thanksgiving dinner.
In the back of my mind I counted the hungry guests who would be coming to our house for dinner. I put my head down on my desk, already feeling defeated.
There’s no way possible, I thought. But the compassion I heard in my husband’s voice struck a nerve inside me.
“Sure,” I replied. “But only if God helps.”
“Thanks, sweetheart,” Roy whispered. “Just do what you can.” He then hung up the telephone. I finished my work and prayed all the way to the nearest grocery store.
I entered the parking lot. I noticed a big sign in the grocery store window: Turkeys – 29 cents a pound.
“This is the place, Lord” I whispered. I grabbed my box of coupons, went inside, secured two buggies, and headed to the frozen foods. The turkeys were indeed on sale, but I discovered one big problem. When I read the sign posted on the freezer door my heart sank. “Limit one.”
“But I need two,” I uttered to myself. I decided to find the manager. I explained the problem. He made an exception.
After tossing a turkey in each buggy, I began my shopping fury. It was amazing how many buy-one, get-one free items were being featured that day. The first item went into one buggy. The free item went in the other. In addition, I had all the right coupons to get exactly what both families needed for a hearty Thanksgiving dinner. I proceeded to the register and held my breath while the cashier rang up my groceries.
To my surprise, I had enough money. I was even able to purchase a package of cookies for the five-year-old who had stolen my heart, even though I had never met her.
Later that afternoon, Roy and I made a special delivery to a home filled with children of all ages. I will never forget the smiles on the six kids’ faces, as they made several trips from my car carrying numerous bags of groceries inside.
This event reminded me of a story. Even though He only had a few loaves and fishes, Jesus multiplied them and fed five thousand people. And to top it off, there was food left over. I wondered if God was doing the same thing that day.
By far, that was the greatest Thanksgiving Day of my life. My entire family shared a hearty meal with us. We had plenty to eat. We even had enough food left over for the evening meal.
That afternoon, when I had time to think about what had happened, I imagined a home, not far from where I lived. There was a mother and a father and six children sitting around the kitchen table, laughing and rejoicing. They enjoyed the same meal that our family had shared together that day.
Then I realized that miracles happen when we step out in faith and in steps God. For with us, some things are impossible. But with God, all things are possible.
~ Nancy B. Gibbs ~