Feb. 9, 2019

NOT ALL ANGELS HAVE WINGS.

 

LIVING WITH FEAR LIMITS OUR LIVES. ONCE I ASKED GOD TO DIRECT MY LIFE....I BEGAN TO FEAR-LESS AND TRUST-MORE.

 

LAST WEEK, I HAD AN AMAZING EXPERIENCE. IT'S SUCH A BRILLIANT EXAMPLE OF GOD'S HANDIWORK AND I WANT TO SHARE IT WITH YOU. EVERYDAY, I TALK TO GOD.   ALL THROUGH THE DAY....I ASK HIM TO DIRECT MY THOUGHTS AND MY ACTIONS..AND...I PAY CLOSE ATTENTION TO THE SMALL VOICE INSIDE ME.

 

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In June of 2018, my home’s roof suffered major damage during a hail storm.  I filed a claim with my Allstate Agent and… though several independent inspectors confirmed my roof damage… the claim was denied. The allstate agent who had my homeowner/car insurance, responded to my request for help by calling me a f###ing Drama Queen.

 I was the only home in my neighborhood that didn’t receive a new roof. I wasted months trying to contacting executives at Allstate’s corporate office but no one cared to talk to me, their customer. To them, I was just another number.

Imagine my stress, anger, and ongoing fear when, after several months, the ceiling in my living room and entrance hall begin showing wet circles after a rainstorm.  With each rain, the circles grew larger and….in several spots, showed signs of mold.

Each time it rained….I was frantic...unable to sleep.  I was up and down, fearful that--at any moment-- water would break-through the ceiling and ruin everything in my house. Worst of all... desperate to find another Insurance Company for my home and car…no one would touch me without a new roof!

Word travels fast in a small community and everyone in the village had heard about the “only woman” who didn’t get a new roof.  I was also the only woman who didn’t know Allstate had a "reputation" for denying homeowner claims!  So---after months of agony, stress, anger, and fear….I woke  one morning and decided TODAY  would be the day to end my ongoing nightmare.

I called Keith, the owner of the most popular roofing company in the village and asked him to give me an estimate for a new roof.    His estimate was slightly under 10,000 dollars.  Of course I didn’t have that kind of money but…he worked with a lender so I could make monthly payments over a 12 year period. It was my only solution to being held “hostage” by insurance crooks like Alan Springer, owner of the Allstate Office across from Hot Spring Village's West Gate.

As soon as the new roof was finished, I visited with various insurance agents in the area before finally walking into Farmers Insurance's small office near The Village.  The professional qualities I spotted in Mike Kolesar, the Farmers Agent I spoke with that day, caught my attention.  For the first time in a very long time, I found someone I could trust.  For the first time in months I was free of Allstate.

Leaving the small shopping center that afternoon, I spotted a pretty little black dog on a leash. Then, I took a closer look at the man who was walking the dog across the parking lot. Not only was the man’s lightweight jacket extremely dirty, it was covered with rips and jagged holes. His old tennis shoes lacked shoe laces and appeared to be several sizes too large. I couldn’t help but notice that, despite the freezing cold, the man wore no socks. Even the knit hat on his head was ragged and torn.

 I stopped the car next to the man to admire the feisty little dog.  It was then that I realized the man was a vagrant, apparently homeless. He had no teeth and his face and hands were dirty and chapped from lengthy exposure to the outside elements.  His neglected appearance indicted that he didn’t have access to running water, fresh clothing, or the usual comforts of home. And yet, his dog looked well- fed, groomed, and loved. 

I learned the man lived in the nearby woods.  He said that, from time to time, people would let him sleep in their carports or outside sheds but…for the most part…he and his four-legged “buddy” snuggled together wherever they could find a dry spot. Apparently, he’d found the dog a few years earlier and taking care of the dog had become the man’s mission.

The man asked if I could spare a few dollars for a hamburger so he and his doggie friend could have lunch. With only a few quarters in my purse, I asked him to wait a few minutes while I went to find cash.

Living on Social Security, I almost-never have extra money.  I barely make it to the end of each month….in spite of living frugally. Yet….for the first time in months, I felt free of fear….free of the pressure and panic that started with a damaged roof….fear that continued until I found an insurance professional I could trust.  Now, a voice inside was saying this man and his dog needed my help.  The man was trusting me, a stranger, to help him through another day.

When I returned to the shopping center, the man and his dog were sitting beside a lamp post, waiting patiently. I handed him two ten dollar bills and—in return—the man thanked me.  I asked if he needed me to take him anywhere but he said “No ma'am, you’ve helped enough. My buddy and I will walk down to McDonald’s and get a hamburger and after we eat….we’ll find someplace to sleep for tonight.  God answered my prayer when you stopped to help us.  I hope he blesses you every day for the rest of your life.”  He patted my arm then walked away.

The next day, I felt so satisfied-- so happy to feel alive again. Late in the afternoon when I opened my mailbox, I saw a small envelope... personally addressed to me…but with no return address.

Inside….with no message…were two fifty dollar bills. The envelope was stamped in Little Rock, AR but there was no return address….nothing to tell me who had sent the one hundred dollars.  Like manna from heaven, the money will certainly be put to good use. Most likely, it will cover the first-month’s loan payment for my new roof.

Something tells me the homeless man and his dog were no coincidence.  God and his angels work in mysterious ways. 

In the Bible it says:  And the King shall answer: Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

Matthew 25:40 says: “What you do for the least of them…you do for me.”

Thank You, God.