A Stranger Ate My Bacon ON Christmas Morning
On Christmas Morning, at 9:45 AM my sweet wife and I were enjoying some homemade pancakes, scrambled eggs and thick cut bacon. I had purchased two (one for us to enjoy and one to give away as a gift) complete pancake mixes from a bakery with stone ground wheat and we were going to enjoy this special treat together before celebrating the Birth of our Lord. The pancakes turned out better than I thought they would (they looked healthy, and that usually isn’t a good sign for tasting good), they were golden brown and muffin like in texture. Just after saying prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord I tore into the three stacked high pile when my wife exclaimed, “There is someone at the front door, do you know him?” I turned to observe the neighbor’s son, who I had met last fall when I was working on our mailbox landscaping blocks, at least that is what I thought at first look. I pulled away from my delicious pancakes (they were getting just syrup infested at the moment, perfect for savoring with hot black coffee) to go help the neighbor with what I thought was a need for batteries (everyone needs batteries for the kids toys and they have probably run out). The gentlemen was dressed in a leather coat, dress shoes, combed hair and looked desperate. “Merry Christmas” my salutation for the day! “Merry Christmas” he responded, and then I thought to myself he looks cold. “I need to ask you a favor from the love of God, could you help me with my need on Christmas morning!” he said it all without a breath. “What do you need?” I asked. He asked if he could get out of the cold, I agreed to have him step in the doorway then he indicated he needed to sit down, I signaled the lazy boy chair would be fine. He explained that he needed hotel money, he has $10 dollars and only needs $55 to pay for the room for the night, would I go and pay his hotel room fee? Just then I realized this is not my neighbor’s son, this is a drifter, a homeless man, a needy person, a con artist maybe? But it is Christmas morning, I feel very blessed, and my pancakes are getting cold, let us get this done right away. I turned to my bride looking astonished at me and the predicament I’m in and said that I would get my shoes and coat and take him to the hotel, I won’t give you money but I will pay for your room one night. He was delighted! I slipped into the other room, as fast as a man could who knew that my pancakes were leaving the heavenly state and slipping into the earthly state of soggy syrup laden, oh well we can get this done quickly. I came into the dining room to see this “guest” eating my bacon at the table seated. My wife was in the other room getting for him pancakes from the pan. “Oh I see you are enjoying breakfast.” He nodded yes as he grabbed the two remaining slices of thick, salty, perfectly cut bacon as my wife returned in time to give him syrup for the perfectly heated pancakes ( I thought my wife had invited him but later I found out he just pulled up to the table when I was getting my shoes). “Do you want some coffee?” I asked him the question thinking my wife had started this generous act of feeding him why not heap on the blessings. “Yes, with cream and sugar!” He responded as he scarfed down the food like there was no tomorrow. I said we should pray for God to meet his needs and for God’s goodness for this breakfast, he concurred with my bacon in the corner of his nearly toothless mouth. I prayed, thanking God, and then he prayed with hands raised to the ceiling, “Amen”. Then without missing the beat he was into the pancakes my wife had supplied. “Where is the sugar?” He asked looking across my table as I cut into my cold pancakes to try to enjoy some of my special Christmas breakfast, after all. I turned to my wife and she said there was sugar in the cabinet, I returned to see this self-confessed diabetic spoon three no four teaspoons of sugar into his coffee and talk about the woes of President Obama not supporting the paratroopers that he had once served his country so bravely. I quickly ushered him out the door to my old truck sitting in the driveway with the goal to drop him off at the hotel and return to my Christmas breakfast. On the way to the Burkwood Hotel he said he didn’t want to be a pig but could I spare some money for a meal? I informed him I had fed him a meal, will pay for the hotel, will pray for him and he may keep his $10 for the next meal, but that the Rescue Mission would give him a meal, and that the VOA would house him if he didn’t care to stay at the mission. I payed the clerk, got my receipt and told the guest Merry Christmas. He was still chewing the bacon from my Christmas breakfast. I knew that my Lord had provided an opportunity for me to help someone in need, someone who I mistook to be my neighbor’s son. I drove home thanking God for his kindness to me, just the grace of God on Christmas morning.