Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Random acts of kindness ... thanking a soldier

I read a story this morning about a random act of kindness when a stranger paid for a young couple's dinner in a restaurant, and it reminded me of this SWAC Girl post from January 12, 2010.....

Our service men and women do so much to protect our freedoms and liberties, and to keep us safe in the War on Terrorism.

A friend and her husband put their money where their mouths are and thank U.S. soldiers in a tangible way whenever they can. Here she shares one of those times and, though she wishes to remain anonymous, she's a die-hard American patriot in the Shenandoah Valley who could be anyone, anywhere.
The best moments I ever experience is when I can pay for a soldier's meal anonymously. My husband and I have been blessed with a very good life in, and for, this beloved country of ours. So that is a way we can give back just a tiny bit.

Not long ago I was sitting in Cracker Barrel and a single member of the military entered and was seated not too far from me. He was in camos and I worried that he was being deployed, probably, I thought, to Fort Bragg and then off to Iraq. So I asked my server to give me his bill, not to tell him anything more than that a grateful conservative Republican woman thanked him for protecting her and her family.

So I paid the bills and left. Before I could leave the parking lot here he came, running, and he caught up with me. I was not happy with the server because she was not supposed to have told him who I was, I wanted no thanks, I wanted to thank him.

In any case he found me and just insisted that I come in and sit with him a bit. Which I did.

He was not being deployed ... he had just recently returned home. He was on his way to Fort Bragg and was going to be helping other military personnel deploy. He was so sweet, decent, and appreciative of that inexpensive meal and he gave me his email address. All of a sudden he had someone that he knew appreciated his work as he was planning to stay in the service which he had joined right after 9/11. He told me what his job had been while overseas.

He talked about those who were left behind. He talked about those who left arms and legs behind and were now trying to learn to live without them.

It was a remarkable half-hour and I was so honored to sit there with him and hear his story. All for a few dollars ... and a quiet personal vow to fight all the people, foreign and domestic, who want to destroy this country and to help the wonderful young service men and women who give so much and expect so little from us in that fight.

What a special gift he gave me and continues to give our country.
This friend constantly reminds me of small blessings that rain down from heaven. I believe she was a blessing to that young soldier that day ... and he was a blessing to her.

"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in." --Matthew 25:35 (NIV)

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