At the end of our driveway, we have about four mail boxes. We don’t have that many people living on our lane, but the mail person refused to go any farther, so that’s where they put their boxes.
Anyway, a couple of years ago, one of our neighbors moved out. We got along with them fine, but before they moved out, they did something really hurtful to our two oldest boys. I never said anything, and that’s life, but they weren’t my favorite people for a while.
About a month after they moved out, I grabbed our mail on my way back from town. I like to stand at the garbage can and go through it as soon as I come in the house. So I was throwing the junk away and opening the stuff I needed to. I think I might have been talking to one of the kids, too, and I was a little distracted as I opened a letter from our bank.
It was a statement that our account was overdrawn, which was kind of shocking to me. Then, as I looked closer, I realized that letter hadn’t been addressed to us. Our former neighbors used the same bank, apparently, and it was their account that was overdrawn.
Well, that was awkward.
I have to admit, my first thought was that they hadn’t been very nice, and maybe not that it served them right, but you reap what you sow, or something.
But there’s that verse that says you shouldn’t laugh at another’s calamity. And a whole avalanche of verses that talk about being nice to people who haven’t been nice to you. (Do good to them that despitefully use you and persecute you, etc, etc lol)
So, I guess this is where I admit that I have some squirrel-like tendencies and I end up with stashes of cash. You know, the grandparents who put cash under their mattress or in their unmentionables drawer? I’m a little more creative, but yeah. I have stashes.
I stood there, looking at that notice, trying to figure out how I was going to get it to them in the least awkward way possible. Then God prompted me to check my stashes and see if I had enough to cover it.
My heart wasn’t really willing and my spirit was a little bitter. They’d hurt my children and I was holding a grudge.
I didn’t have my stashes for mean people who ripped kids down with their words and made my tough teen boys cry.
But, God prompted me. It’s easy to be nice to people who are nice to you. The way we show we’re children of our Heavenly Father is by being nice to those who are mean to us. Right? Matthew 5:44. We all have it memorized, don’t we? I didn’t want to actually live it, though.
My husband says I’d argue with a dead person. I don’t know if that’s true, but it would probably be better than arguing with the Lord. I need to quit that.
Finally, after I knew I wouldn’t have any peace until I obeyed, I went around and checked all my normal stashes. The amount was well into the three figures, and I didn’t think I would have that much. (Okay, maybe I was hoping I wouldn’t have that much!) But I found more than enough to cover it and put in a little extra.
By that time I was smiling. Honestly, when I get past that initial reluctance, it feels really good to return good for evil. Strong. The way you feel when you succeed at doing something hard. It’s a good feeling.
I knew the address in town where they had moved to, so I addressed a fresh envelope, enclosed the notice and took it into the post office. Honestly, I smiled the whole way.
God knows what happened from there. I never heard a word. I wasn’t really expecting to, and I didn’t need to. I don’t know if the money made it to them, or if it even was meant to. I think that whole thing was just God teaching me a lesson.
Thanks so much for spending time with me today.
Hugs and love,