Monday, April 10, 2006

.Ruth went to her mail box and there was only one letter
She picked it up and looked at it before opening, but
then she looked at the envelope again. There was no stamp
no postmark, only her name and address. She read the

,Dear Ruth

I`m going to be in your neighborhood Saturday
afternoon and I'd like to stop
.by for a visit
Love Always, Jesus

Her hands were shaking as she placed the letter
on the table. "Why would the
?Lord want to visit me

".I'm nobody special. I don't have anything to offer

With that thought, Ruth remembered her empty
kitchen cabinets. "Oh my goodness, I really don't
have anything to offer. I'll have to run down to
the store and buy something for dinner." She
.reached for her purse and counted out its contents
Five dollars and forty cents. "Well, I can get
".some bread and cold cuts, at least

.She threw on her coat and hurried out the door

A loaf of French bread, a half-pound of sliced turkey
and a carton of milk...leaving Ruth with grand total
.twelve cents to last her until Monday

Nonetheless, she felt good as she headed home, her
.meager offerings tucked under her arm

"?Hey lady, can you help us, lady"

Ruth had been so absorbed in her dinner plans, she
.hadn't even noticed two figures huddled in the alleyway
A man and a woman, both of them dressed in little
.more than rags

Look lady, I ain't got a job, ya know, and my wife and"
I have been living out here on the street, and, well
now it's getting cold and we're getting kinda hungry and
well, if you could help us. Lady, we'd really appreciate

.Ruth looked at them both

They were dirty, they smelled bad and frankly, she was
certain that they could get some kind of work if they
.really wanted to

.Sir, I'd like to help you, but I'm a poor woman myself"
All I have is a few cold cuts and some bread, and I'm
having an important guest for dinner tonight and I was
".planning on serving that to Him

".Yeah, well, okay lady, I understand. Thanks anyway"

The man put his arm around the woman's shoulders, turned
.and headed back into the alley

As she watched them leave, Ruth felt a familiar twinge
.in her heart

Sir, wait!" The couple stopped and turned as she ran"
down the alley after them. "Look, why don't you take
this food. I'll figure out something else to serve
".my guest

.She handed the man her grocery bag

"!Thank you lady. Thank you very much"

Yes, thank you!" It was the man's wife, and Ruth"
could see now that she was shivering. "You know, I've
got another coat at home. Here, why don't you take
this one." Ruth unbuttoned her jacket and slipped it
over the woman's shoulders. Then smiling, she turned
and walked back to the street...without her coat and
.with nothing to serve her guest

"!Thank you lady"

"!Thank you very much"

Ruth was chilled by the time she reached her
front door, and worried too. The Lord was coming to
.visit and she didn't have anything to offer Him

She fumbled through her purse for the door key. But
.as she did, she noticed another envelope in her mailbox

That's odd. The mailman doesn't usually come twice in"
one day." She took the envelope out of the box
.and opened it

:Dear Ruth

It was so good to see you again. Thank you for
the lovely meal. And thank you, too, for
.the beautiful coat

Love Always Jesus

The air was still cold, but even without her
.coat, Ruth no longer noticed

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