80: Touched by an Angel

80: Touched by an Angel

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Random Acts of Kindness

Touched by an Angel

Angels can fly directly into the heart of the matter.

~Author Unknown

When my husband’s car wouldn’t start one morning, he came into the house and gave me the unwelcome news. I drove him to work and my youngest to school, and then I went off to my ladies Bible class. A man who happened to be at the building offered to follow me home and jump Don’s car for me, so that I could take it to the mechanic.

That worked and I was on my way to the mechanic, when I realized I had a problem. The turn signals refused to operate and the dashboard clock kept fading out. Even though it was a warm day in south central Florida I turned off the air conditioning and prayed the battery would last until I got to the mechanic, or at least within walking distance.

I drove down the highway and got into the left-turn lane for the road that would take me to my destination. At that point, the car quit.

“NO!” I shouted at it. The car, of course, ignored me and sat there, so dead that even the hazard lights refused to work. There I was, stuck in the left-turn lane of the town’s main drag, and there was nothing I could do about it.

I carefully got out of the car and popped the hood, hoping that would signal to other motorists I wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Since I couldn’t hurt the battery any further I kept my door open so I wouldn’t bake in the car while I began the process of getting the motor club to send a tow truck.

While I was on hold, a car pulled up behind me and a dark-haired woman got out. I got out of my vehicle, motioning to it in an attempt to explain I wasn’t going anywhere.

She opened the conversation by saying, “I was going to let you use my cell phone, but I see you have one.”

How nice, I thought.

She reached into her car and pulled out an icy drink from a fast food restaurant. “It looks like you might be here a while… I brought you something to drink. I hope you like Dr. Pepper.”

What? First off, I was thirsty. Secondly, I adore Dr. Pepper, though I usually limit myself to the diet kind. I gratefully accepted the soda.

Then the woman reached into her car again. “I’m on my lunch break… I brought you a sandwich.” She handed me a sack with a chicken sandwich and fries and smiled.

My mouth fell open. This woman, who didn’t know me at all, had gone out of her way to bring me lunch and a drink… just because.

A person with a fully functioning brain would’ve asked this angel her name, or at least offered to pay for the meal. But at that moment my brain had short-circuited. If this gal had reached into her car and pulled out a mechanic, I don’t think I would’ve been surprised.

I did manage to stammer out a thank-you to her. She got back into her car and drove out of my life. I never saw her again.

This happened over fourteen years ago, and I still think about it. In a world where we hear about people treating others badly, this stands out to me like a beacon. It’s something worth copying.

I haven’t yet bought a meal for someone stuck on the road. But I have given rides to stranded strangers. I’ve offered to call for help for others in a similar situation. I try to lend a helping hand when I can to people who are in need, remembering the hand held out to me when I needed it.

I don’t know who that woman was, but to me, she was an angel. And I’m grateful for the way she touched my life.

~Laura Ware

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