Ten days ago today as Tricia and I were returning in the afternoon from a day-off outing, we came up the stairs to the second-floor landing and there leaning against our office door was a large, white garbage bag stuffed to the full with what looked like clothing. Recently someone in our church had generously given a large amount of clothing to a homeless women we know and help. Those clothes were in a large garbage bag. When I saw another bag, I thought, "oh man, where are we going to put it?" We have very little storage space.
But when we took a look at the contents, they turned out to be all hand-knit, brightly colored winter caps! When I saw them, my mind turned quickly to a group of wonderful women at Calvary Presbyterian Church in Enfield, CT who've blessed us with well-made and brightly-colored knit caps and scarves for the last couple of years. So I contacted Kathy, the contact person, and asked if they did this lovely thing? She wrote back and said it wasn't them, but a friend of a friend who'd blessed us with such loving bounty.
I have to say, we were moved by the thoughtfulness of a stranger. Although I don't know how it all came about, this person felt it important to help clothe the homeless and poor in our town. Maybe she does this sort of thing as a ministry. Maybe someone in the knitting group at Calvary mentioned imagine/Northampton and she was moved by God to give her gift. The reason is not important. Her generosity and skill blessed our Monday, and reminded us of the love Christians give anonymously, and without fanfare.
So last Sunday I had the bag upfront as I was giving announcements at the end of our gathering. I told the story and asked the folks there to sign a card of gratitude to the generous capmaker. I wanted her to know we remember, and are filled with delight for her gift. Our gratitude hits also close to home. One of our regulars lives on the street with her adult son. She proudly and gratefully wears one as the days and nights are turning the corner toward fall and winter.
In December, we'll hand them out when we do our annual Christmas Gift Bag Giveaway to the street folks. I imagine we'll likely give away a few before as we're made aware of the need. It will be our pleasure and privilege.
So thank you capmaker!
Thank you Jesus for creating folks who give without big to-do's being made over what they've donated.
Thank you Giver of all good gifts that we get to deliver such blessing to others.
If you think of it, pray an unexpected blessing today on this thoughtful woman. May all who are like her around the world thrive in the exquisite freedom of generosity.