Following the star
February 26, 2022
A church friend asked me to deliver a small cash gift to her relative in jail at the London Detention Centre. It so happened there were two other people waiting at the front door for the same reason. We each answered a series of questions through the intercom. This process took almost 15 minutes before we finally received our receipts and were free to leave.
During this time the three of us struck up a conversation. One lady explained how her boy friend had gone into the jail five weeks ago but she wasn't allowed to visit him because of an outbreak of COVID.
I felt a flicker of pity for her but once I had my receipt in hand I promptly started walking back to my car, eager to get on with life. In my typical hast I started taking a short cut across the snow covered grass field toward the parking lot some 50 yards away. But suddenly I had a second thought: “Why was I in such a hurry to get home?” “What about taking a more leisurely walk back on the pavement? Could this perhaps open a door to share some final words with the person I had felt sorry for moments earlier?”
I listened to the small voice and returned to the side-walk. I was able to naturally resume making small talk with the woman. Then, as she approached her car, not far from mine, I commented about a movie I'd seen three years ago with my grandchildren. I asked her if she had ever heard of the movie called The star?” She appeared somewhat puzzled so I assumed she didn't know about it and I said, “Oprah Winfrey played a role in the movie.” Suddenly her face lit up and I took a pamphlet out of my pocket entitled, “Following the star.” Showing it to her, I said, “This article was published around the same time the movie came out.”
She looked at it and said in a surprised voice, “Are you giving this to me?” I replied, “Sure, you're welcome to keep it.” Her face lit up with a big smile as she exclaimed, “That's amazing. Thank you so much.”
Who would have thought receiving this article would mean so much to her? What if I hadn't changed my mind and sought her out? Maybe most people shun or ignore her. No matter what, everyone deserves to hear God loves them and discover the truth about Jesus. It is our privilege to give them that opportunity.
*From the author: "I thank God for opening the door to publish this small story in our local London paper, Christian Life in London".