Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Hospitality (02/07/05)
TITLE: Texas Hospitality
By Eli Espinoza
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“It’s not ready, yet. It’s going to take awhile to get the parts in. Is everything alright? You seem to be in a big hurry.”
“Well, my mom is sick, and my brothers and I need to be with her. I’m the only one with a car, and we were on our way to Dallas right before the accident.”
“Who was at fault in the accident? Was it your fault or the other person?”
“It was the other person’s fault. His insurance told me that they would provide me with a vehicle, but it would take a couple of days. I don’t have a couple of days. My mom’s not doing so well” I could feel the tears building up in my eyes, but I would never let anyone see me cry.
“Hold on one second.” As he walked inside, I thought he would never come back. I thought about my mom. My mother taught me to be respectful; it didn’t matter the color or the gender. We often had talks about equality. She told me to be Christian-like no matter what the situation.
“I have some good news and bad news. The bad news is…its going to take about a week for your parts to get here.” I felt my heart drop.
“I really could use the good news.”
“Well, I spoke to the insurance company and told them your situation. They agreed to let you pick up a vehicle today at five.”
“Thank you. You don’t know what this means to me.”
“Would you like to come in and use the phone to call someone to pick you up?”
I thought to myself only God could have put me in this man’s shop. As I went inside, I noticed a woman sitting behind the computer.
“Hola, como estas?” She asked in Spanish.
“Bien, gracias.” I replied.
“I would like you to meet my wife. Teresa, this is the young man I was telling you about. I’m sorry what did you say your mom’s name is?”
“Juanita Gutierrez, but everyone calls her...”
“Janie. I know your mom. I should have known you look just like her.” she said smiling.
“Oh, she’s your mom. A lot of people have been putting in prayer requests for her at our church. We’ve been praying extra hard for her.”
“Thank you. I will let her know. I wish I had more time to talk but I really have to go. Thank you again for all your help.”
“Have a safe trip; we will continue praying for you and your family.”
I ran out of that shop praying that God would continue to bless them for their hospitality. I could not help to think what a nice church they must attend. I knew I needed to find a church for myself one day. My mom always told me that as long as I feel the presence of God; it doesn’t matter what church I attend.
Because of the generosity of these people that I had just met, my brothers and I were able to spend the last few days with my mother before she passed away. The Sunday that followed, I asked my wife if I could attend church with her and my daughter. As we drove into the parking lot of this little church, I read the name Lighthouse Assembly of God. I felt nervous, but I knew that I had my family there to support me.
“Watch this.” My wife said with a smile on her face. “Annaliese, praise Jesus.” After she said that, my two-year-old daughter raised her little hands in the air and closed her eyes. And just like that, the nervousness that I felt turned into joy. I sat through the service and was extremely moved by the songs of praise and worship. As we were leaving, I felt someone tap me on the shoulder.
“We are very sorry to hear about your mom.”
To my amazement, I turned to see the owners of the body shop. I was so touched to see them that I hugged both of them and cried. I am now a four year member of the Lighthouse Assembly of God. The body shop owners are my dear friends and bought me my first bible. God sure does work in mysterious ways.
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