Ruth went to her mailbox and there was only one letter. She picked it up and looked at it before opening and she noticed the envelope had no stamp and no postmark. It only had her name and address. But she opened it anyway and began reading the letter;
I'm going to be in your neighborhood Saturday afternoon and I'd like to stop by for a visit.
Her hands were shaking as she placed the letter on the table. "Why would the Lord want to visit me? I'm nobody special. I don't have anything to offer." With that thought Ruth remembered her empty kitchen cabinets. "Oh my goodness. I really don't have anything to offer. I'll have to go down to the store and buy something for dinner."
She reached for her purse and counted her money... $5.40 "Well, Ican get some bread and cold cuts, at least." she threw on her coat and hurried out the door.
Leaving the grocery store, Ruth had a loaf of French bread, a half-pound of sliced turkey and a carton of milk. Now she had a grand total of twelve cents to last her until the following Monday. Nonetheless, she felt as she headed home, her meager offerings tucked under her arm would be sufficient.
"Hey lady, can you help us, lady?"
Ruth had been so absorbed in her dinner plans, she hadn't even noticed two figures huddled in the alleyway. A man and a woman, both of them dressed in little more than rags.
"Look, lady. I don't got no job, ya know, and my wife and I have been living out here on the street, and well, now it's getting cold and we're getting kinda hungry and, well, if you could help us, lady, we'd really appreciate it."
Ruth looked at them both. They were dirty, they smelled bad and frankly, she was certain that they could get some sort of work if they really wanted to. "Sir, I'd like to help you but I'm a poor woman myself. All I have is a few cold cuts and some bread and I'm having a very important guest for dinner tonight and I was planning on serving that to Him."
"Yeah, well, ok lady. I understand. Thanks anyway." The man put his arm around his wife's shoulder, turned and headed back into the alley.
As she watched them leave, Ruth felt a familiar twinge in her heart. "Sir, wait!"
The couple stopped and turned as she ran down the alley after them.
"Look, why don't you take this food. I'll figure out something else to serve my guest." she handed the man her grocery bag.
"Thank you, lady. Thank you very much."
"Yes, thank you!" said the man's wife. Now Ruth could see that she was shivering.
"You know, I've got another coat at home. here, why don't you take this one." Ruth unbuttoned her jacket and slipped it over the woman's shoulders. Then smiling, she turned and walked back to the street... without her coat and nothing to serve her guest.
"Thank you, lady! Thank you very much!"
Ruth was chilled by the time she reached her front door and worried too. The Lord was coming to meet her and she didn't have anything to offer Him. She fumbled through her purse for her keys and as she did, she noticed another envelope in her mailbox. "That's odd," she thought "the mailman doesn't usually come twice in one day." She took the envelope, opened it and began to read the letter:
It was so good to see you again. Thank you for the lovely meal. And thank you, for the beautiful coat.
The air was still cold but even without her coat, Ruth no longer noticed.
BE A BLESSING AND BE BLESSED!
Matthew 25:35-36 "For I was hungry and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me. NLT
Matthew 25:40 "And the King will say, 'I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of those my brothere and sisters, you were doing it to me!'" NLT