Robert Williams’ family moved to Mexico when he was 14 years old. After a few years, his parents decided to return home to the United States, but Robert stayed because he had already started college.
As a young man, his finances were not solid and he counted on his parents’ help for food and rent. They faithfully sent him money on a monthly basis, though sometimes the funds failed to arrive on time. At the end of one month, as he was struggling to make ends meet, he found himself with very little food. He was concerned, but certainly hoped the monthly allowance would arrive the following day. He opened his refrigerator, and only saw one potato, one onion, and a piece of chicken. He thought, “I will bake the potato and the chicken, and pray that the money arrives tomorrow.” To make things worse, his dog was anxiously waiting to get a little bit of that dinner too. As he was ready to eat, he heard a knock on the door, and when he opened it, he found a woman with a baby in her arms. She seemed desperate, and told him she had nothing to eat. Robert asked her to wait and he went back inside, and looked at his dinner knowing that he had nothing else to eat, but made a plate for her, covered it with aluminum foil, and gave it to the young woman. He later made a peanut butter sandwich.
He decided to walk his dog after his frugal dinner. They passed by an empty lot, and his dog went straight to it. As he was sniffing and looking around, Robert glanced a shiny paper. He got closer, and to his disappointment, he saw his dinner untouched, still warm, laying on the ground. The woman obviously only wanted money from Robert. His dog, however, was very happy and ate it all. Robert was certainly depressed.
Near the place he lived, there was a big fresh market. The main road to that market was a few blocks away. Trucks loaded with vegetables and fruit were always going back and forth. As he was going to cross the street, there was a big truck full of cabbage coming his way. He stopped at the curb. As the truck passed by, he looked at it without paying too much attention, just thinking of what had just happened. In the back of the truck, at the top of the load of cabbage, there was a boy staring at him with mischief in his eyes. As if disturbed by the look on Robert’s face, he grabbed a cabbage and tossed it to him in a very mean way, trying to hit him hard. Robert was shocked. He did not expect it, but caught the cabbage in the air. The truck disappeared, and there was Robert in the middle of the street, with his dog, no money, an empty stomach, hit by a cabbage.
After recovering from what had just happened, Robert picked up the cabbage, and thought, “This literally came from above.” His mood suddenly changed. He was grateful. He enthusiastically went back home, cut and sautéed the onion, chopped the cabbage, put it in the frying pan, added some salt, and had the most delicious cabbage he had ever eaten. The following day, his allowance arrived.
Many years have passed, and Robert, now an elder at Atlanta First Hispanic Church in Tucker, Georgia, still remembers this story vividly. The Lord never fails his promises!
“Those who give to the poor will lack nothing, but those who close their eyes to them receive many curses,” Proverbs 28:27, NIV.
is the SURF customer service and accounts manager at the Southern Union in Norcross, Georgia.
Southern Union | October 2018