The Kindness of Strangers

Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it                                  Hebrews 13:1-2


While traveling this week, we encountered car trouble on the interstate in North Carolina. The car lost power and I limped it to the first exit which, fortunately, was close. There is actually a thing called “limp mode” in Hondas- who knew? We found a little tire store/repair shop right off the ramp and took it in there at about 4:55PM. The shop was to close at 5:00PM, but I talked with a guy in the lot and explained our problem. He told me to “go inside and check with Randy”. Randy called over to Steve who put the computer scanner on the car, then drove it around the block just to check on the performance. By this time, the check engine light had gone off, and the car seemed to be running a little rough, but sufficient to move us down the road to our hotel. Steve said that he thought we could get down the road, spend the night, and get to a Honda dealer in the morning.

Once again, fortunately, there was a Honda dealer that got us in first thing that next morning. They hooked the car up, checked it out, and said that it was probably a glitch in the system that detected a minor problem, and it had corrected itself. They had the car for an hour, did all the testing, and, finding no problem, said that he wouldn’t charge us because they had found nothing wrong. He gave me a bill for $0, and also gave me the code for a free car wash.

By the way, the guy at the little shop from the night before refused to take money for their time, even after working past their closing time.

These people were strangers- rather, I was a stranger to them. They treated me with compassion, kindness and understanding, and also great generosity. I got to thinking about the instruction we have about treating strangers with kindness. Really, we count on this every day. People we do not know do things for us, and we for them, without actually knowing them.

It was a good reminder to me. I was treated with great kindness when in a vulnerable situation. How often do we get to “entertain angels?” Maybe every day.


Prayer: Father, thank you for the angels you sent to me and my wife this week. Protect all us travelers as we go about our life every day, Amen.


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