Benefit of the doubt

From the Heart

I am not a morning person . . . especially on Mondays.

When I hurried to work this past Monday, I just wanted to settle into the tasks at hand . . . ever so slowly. Of course I wanted drinking my coffee to be No. 1 on the list.

That would come after I took a customer’s car to the gas station to fill the tank.

I pulled by the pump at the Shell Station only to find it had a yellow bag over the nozzle. No gas. I pulled around to another pump.

As I got out of the car I noticed that the car in front of me had a handicapped plate on it. The car definitely had a few miles on it. A man, who looked to be in his mid-thirties also looked a bit disheveled. He was simply standing beside the car.

The man did not look up but I heard him say, “I’m stranded. Could you please help me by putting some gas in my car?”

I looked around and there was no one else to whom he could have been asking that question. My mind scrambled for an answer. Sadly, my first thought was that I was being scammed. My next thought was that I only had the company credit card with me.

I put my hand into the pocket of my coat. I never have cash in my pocket. That morning, I did. My heart immediately told me what I was going to do.

I told the man to give me a minute while I went inside to tell the cashier to put $20 in his tank. The cashier let me know that customers were not to beg from other customers.

I smiled and reminded her that it was Christmas and it was MY $20. She smiled and nodded.

As I returned to my car I waved and said “You got $20”! He thanked me though he never looked up.

As he turned to start pumping the gas I told him that I had a favor to ask of him. He glanced over his shoulder. I knew he had no idea what this stranger (or strange lady) was going to ask.

“Mister, I want you to pay it forward. You see an act of kindness costs nothing, so please just be kind to someone today.”

As I turned to get into the car I saw another salesperson pull beside the pump which I had seen with the yellow bag. The bag was gone.

Believe what you want but I believe I was meant to be at that place at that time. It was such a small gesture but it made my heart smile . . . and the coffee sure tasted a bit sweeter.

I just know one thing . . . I will always listen my heart. The benefit of the doubt will always be my sweet spot.

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