weekly word – 12/22/22

No Writer’s Block This Time


The last time I wrote my Weekly Word, I told you I had a hard time trying to find a subject to write about. I called it Writer’s Block. Well, I am not having that problem this time because I have a great story to tell. 

It seems that we (Guyla and I) committed to a project several weeks ago with Camelot School.  I’m not sure that a lot of you know about the turkeys that we get from Union Gospel Mission, but they offer us through their outreach program a number of turkeys each year at Thanksgiving. The church has been working with Camelot over the years, with the “Christmas Cheer” project, and at Thanksgiving helping them with turkeys. This year was no exception -- we again had the opportunity to share 4 turkeys to needy families from the school.

Because of financial and staffing issues, our church decided not to continue “Christmas Cheer”, but we asked if we could help them with their food drive. Well, if you commit to a food drive and expect the congregation to join you, it’s a good idea to pick up some food to put in the boxes (kind of like a seed thing.).

WINCO has lower prices for some things, and that means we can get more to put in the boxes and that means that we can contribute more to the school. So, Thursday, December 1st we went to Winco to buy non-perishable food. We bought things like flour, sugar, cereals, canned vegetables, and things that would be considered staples.

We finished shopping, and it was time to check out, I started putting the things we bought on the belt and waited patiently for the checker to finish with the woman in front of us. The belt was full and we still had a pretty full basket. 

There was a gentleman behind us with maybe 10 items.  He was using one of the motorized carts. Guyla looked at him and said, “Why don’t you go ahead of us?” He was somewhat surprised at her comment and said, “Really?” Her answer was “Yes.” Well, he pulled the cart around us and I moved our things back, so he could get his items on the belt, then helped him off load his cart.

The checker was watching all this happen, and gave us a rather funny look.  She checked him out and he thanked us profusely, and then said, “Have a Happy Holiday.” We told him he was welcome and to have a “Merry Christmas.”

Now it’s our turn to check out.  The lady started checking us out, and as she started she asked, “What are you going to “make or do”  with 20 lbs of flour, 20 lbs of sugar, 12 cans of corn, 8 boxes of cereal, and…..and,…. and,…. and?  What a great opening to share the food drive for an elementary school next to our church.  I was able to share what we, as a congregation, have done over the years to help needy families in our neighborhood.  Several people were close enough to hear what was being said, and that was awesome… God is really good at providing opportunities like that if you are willing to “go for it.” 

Great stuff, right? Well here we go…. This is the rest of the story…

She was really into talking about what I had told her and as we were finishing up and getting ready to pay for the groceries, my phone rang. A number I didn’t recognize and I thought, “It’s most likely a telemarketer.”  The person on the other end of the line, however, started to tell me about an insurance program that I had been enrolled in for my eyes.  The program I was on had run out of funding, and we ended up paying several hundred dollars for treatment that we thought was covered. She told me that she had taken the liberty to look for, and found, a better program than the one I had been on, and that the money we had paid out of pocket would be reimbursed. The new plan would also cover more treatments and for a longer period of time. As I was listening, I started tearing up and had a hard time handling what had just happened. Guyla walked over to me as I was trying to process what I had just heard.  She asked me what was wrong, and I told her nothing was wrong but isn’t God awesome.  He just gave us a very large refund. And she started to tear up. 

The lady that had just checked us out looked over at us. We were both teary eyed and she asked if we were alright? I said, “Yes, we‘re fine, but God just gave us a $700.00 refund.” Her response was something to the effect of, “Are you kidding?” “WOW!”

Did she catch the GOD part? I don’t know if she did, but we sure did.

We went to the store to buy some things to share with folks that were in need, and ended up getting a bonus in the way of a refund on a bill that was paid and the money gone.  

Is there a connection? I don’t know how you see it, but we saw it. We knew that a portion of that money had to go back to Him in the form of additional food for those needy Camelot families.

“Tis the Season…and He is the reason!

As a follow up to this story, because of your generosity as a congregation, we were able to deliver 6 full boxes and 10 large grocery bags of food on Monday the 12th to the school. The staff at Camelot thanks you so very much for your willingness to reach out to those in need in this “season of celebration” of the birth of our Lord and Savior.

Thank You! 


Ed Johanson