Target, Spaghetti Sauce and a Little Love

I know that feeling. Standing at the register, child in the cart, packing bags around them, one hand gripping all the cash you could find in your house and car  along with your debit card you’re about to play cashier roulette with.

When the cashier tells you the total, you hand her the cash, then pray the debit card machine magically confuses your account for someone who has enough money for groceries in it.

“Leave out the spaghetti sauce, I may not have enough. I might have to put some things back, too.”  The mom replied. A blush rose up the back of her neck while she searched for more cash in her purse. 

I’m a mom of 3. 2 jars of meat flavored pasta sauce are 2 dinners. I know this trick. 

I felt nauseous for her. I wanted to help. But, can you offer to help pay for someone’s groceries, or is that just heaping embarrassment on embarrassment? I quietly slipped the cash I had in my purse to the cashier. Not enough. (Why couldn’t this be easy?) I told her to just ring up the rest on my card and put it in her cart.

The mom couldn’t believe it. I asked her if it was ok. “I’ve been there. I’d wished someone would have helped. Today I can, so I’d like to. ” 

“I’m a single mom, I live with my parents, it’s hard.” She replied. Tears started welling up in her eyes.

“Being a mom is hard, please let me make it just a little easier for you today.”

She let me.

“You’re doing a great job. Just know somebody thinks you matter.” 

I wish I could have done more. Said more. Something: more.

But this is what I could do that day. Please pray for her and her little princess. Being a mom IS hard. We need each other. Please pray she knows how loved she is. How noticed her hard work is. How much she blessed me by letting me do a little something to help someone else.

See, what she doesn’t know is, cancer tries to steal your ability to see the needs of others, let alone help them. This week? Cancer lost, and a single mom won. She helped me much more than I helped her.

So dear momma: Mangia! Enjoy. 

Dear lord, where ever we go, we have a choice, extend love? Or judge? Help me to look for opportunities to love. In Jesus name, amen. Ps: yes, even at target. I’m glad I went. Or that momma may have left sauceless and broke.