Stopped For Helping

News travels fast. I paid no attention, until as I left the store, after getting some fishing equipment, a manager tugged on my shoulder.

Wondered, why? Hadn’t taken anything I didn’t pay for. Had the receipt, actually a double receipt. I’ll explain.

The manager, couldn’t read his nametag as he blurred his name, “Sir, may I speak to you a moment?”

Didn’t think he wanted to order a novel, and I wasn’t pushed with an egg-timer-schedule, “Sure, what do you have in mind?” [Thought that sounded with a resonance that included not being miffed!]

He began, pointing to a mother and child leaving the store, the boy beaming. “I’ve never seen that before. Do you know what you did?”

Truth pushes, I had no idea what his problem was.

He continued, “The clerk said you paid for that boy’s NIKE tennis shoes, is he a friend of yours?”

Normally I can be as cynical as the next person, but set that aside, “No, I don’t know him. Never met him before and will probably never see him again. Why?”

“Well, you paid for him. Why did you do that?”

I then started my rankled posture, “Is there a law against paying it forward, no matter what race the one helped is? [The boy was black.] And, who knows? He could have been pink…I don’t care. I only pay attention to what color a person’s heart is. Including you! Maybe I just helped the next Kobe Bryant.”

He looked puzzled, I didn’t explain.

More, “I happened to be next to the boy, he pulled some cash out of his pocket to buy new tennis shoes and it hit me, why not? Why not say something to the cashier, which I did, asking him to let me pay for the shoes. Honestly? Not that big of a frickin’ deal. He’s a young boy and as I told the cashier, there’s not enough kindness in this world. I simply wanted to do it.”

I left.

As I got to my car, I heard a honk.

Looked up.

The boy was sitting in the backseat, his father was driving. As his father wiped tears from his face, “Mister, you have been an exception. Thank you for what you did for my son.”

The boy clapped his hands, yelled, “THANKS!” I clapped back and went on with life. GO, KOBE!

About Mark H Miller

Diane and I live in Leander, Texas. This past June 17, 2015 I celebrated the 49th anniversary of my ordination. We returned to Texas after three years in Washington, during which I served as interim minister in Bellevue/Eastgate and Mercer Island. Am planning to begin a 5th novel that will have my protagonist, Tricia Gleason, serve a year in licensed ministry in Snoqualmie, Washington. The novel, "The Lemon Drop Didn't Melt," will find Tricia wrestling with ministry challenges. None of which more daunting than someone wanting her breathing to stop. All the published novels are available on Amazon and Amazon Kindle under Mark Henry Miller. A primary goal in our return to Texas is to make sure grandchildren get lots of attention--here and in Chicago and Washington, D.C. Traveling is definitely an activity that will not slow down. With that, of course, fishing will happen. To that the t-shirt is apt, "I fish; therefore I am." In addition to novels, the book of Blogs, "Voice Of My Heart," is also available on Amazon.
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1 Response to Stopped For Helping

  1. Tom Widlits says:


    TW. Sent from my iPhone

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