Wednesday, September 23, 2009

What's the catch?

Well, today was the first day of Grace By The Gallon in action. I had the day off and I decided I would give it a go. After being so excited about this opportunity, it surprised me that I got nervous as soon as I had made the decision. The gas station attendants probably thought I had a bomb in the back of my car or something because I sat in the parking lot of Exxon for at least 30 minutes trying to get up my nerve.

(By the way, if you're just tuning in to my blog, you might want to scroll down and read what this is all about because you're probably pretty confused right now. Ha! I don't blame you.)

After wrestling with silly insecurities, I decided it was now or never. Just then, an older lady pulled up in an Explorer and I though, today's your lucky day. :) She got out of her car, and I hurried over to catch her before she paid saying, "Excuse me, may I ask you a question?" Well, I've never considered myself to be one that looks like I'm going to mug someone but apparently I did at that moment because she looked pretty startled and hesitant to talk to me. I mean I know I wasn't wearing makeup and I had just finished working out, but seriously? I then asked her if she would allow me to pay for her gas. She pretty much looked at me in disgust like I was playing a mean joke on her or something and asked me "Why?" like I was a crazy person.

I preceded to tell her that it was just something that the Lord had laid on my heart and I would like to do it for her if she would let me. She was completely dumbfounded and after a few seconds, she agreed. I swiped my debit card and started to talk to her and ask her questions about herself knowing I had about 3-4 minutes to let her fill up her tank. The next 3 minutes just completely affirmed my decision to start GBTG.

Turns out, Pam had her two grandchildren in the car and she drives up once a week to keep them for her daughter who's going through a divorce. She began to tear up as she talked to me, explaining that this wasn't even her car but her daughter's and how her daughter was really in need of this right now. Every minute or so, she would start laughing and say, " Honey, this just doesn't happen! There aren't people like this in the world!" How sad, I thought, that people think that there aren't others who want to do things for people like Pam without some kind of re-payment. Definitely got my wheels turning.....

She went on to tell me that her son was an actor in L.A. and she never talks to him or gets to see her grandchildren out there.

The reason I'm sharing all of this with you is I've realized lately, that you NEVER know what someone's going through until we stop and take the time to listen. I don't know why she opened up to me the way she did but maybe she just wanted someone to talk to or needed to get it off her chest because she was frustrated. This world is so full of hurt and everyone has something they're going through whether big or small. I hope that her day was brightened a little bit (and not just by the lit up Exxon sign). I also hope that GBTG was able to give her hope that there are people out there who care about her but more importantly, that there is a God who loves her and cares for her. I don't know if today really affected her but I can tell you that her demeanor from the moment she got out of the car to the moment she drove off was that of two completely different people. Maybe she'll "pass on the love" and maybe she'll wonder if there really is something more to the reason I did that for her....maybe not, but what if she did?.....

Thanks for tuning in. I'm so excited to see what the Lord is going to do through this organization. Please let me know if you would like to contribute to GBTG whether through committing to praying for it, donating financially, or coming along for a ride to the gas station and experiencing the power of God's grace.

"In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's GRACE that he LAVISHED on us with all wisdom and understanding."
Ephesians 1:7-8


  1. Teared up a little reading that. :-) This is such an awesome thing God's laid on your heart...I can't wait to see the amazing things that come of it!

  2. YAY!! I'm so excited that you had such an awesome first experience! This story is wonderful and I was so excited while I was reading it. I'm so proud of you Emily! Let us know more when it happens:)

  3. So excited to hear about the inaugural GBTG journey. I must say... I can picture Pam with this big smile, yet confused look on her face. I can even hear her saying "honey" in that sweet grandma voice. You're too funny. I might have to tag along next time :)

    Peace and blessings my dear friend.

  4. What a wonderful story, Em!. I can just hear and see this whole story and would love to have been there! The number of people you touched with your kindness multiplied as this lady shared her story and of course as we all read and share your blog. Thank you for that! And yes, Em, you ARE your mother's child!! I love you, Nancy