March 13, 2009
I Saw Something Awesome
As we headed into court on Wednesday morn, I could not help but notice the elderly woman just ahead of us. You could tell from her actions that she was maybe more nervous than most of us to be there - unfortunately, she had no one with her for moral support. Her movements were slow; as she was placing her letter on the table, the way that we 'signed in', two people between us got impatient and put their letters down without waiting for her. My Momma would have smacked me to know I had even thought of that...so I didn't. I waited patiently.
She sat at the end of our row and listened very closely as the DA gave his spiel on the different ways tickets could be handled at this pre-trial date. When they offered the paper to fill out for a payment plan, she pored over it and made sure to put something on every line...even getting out her little address book for phone numbers.
We sat through several people telling the DA their story, you could hear most of what people were saying to him because the courtroom is a confined space. Most notable was the first case - a teenage girl that was speeding and stopped by a county officer and given a ticket. Her ticket was dismissed, however, because the officer was in the wrong county!!!
Then, when they called the name of the elderly woman, she once again began her slow move. I will have to say, we had several warm days at the beginning of the week but on Wednesday, the court day, it turned cold and rainy so any one's body would be moving slower than normal!!! She made sure to grab her papers - the one used for your payment plan - her umbrella and her purse. She seemed burden, though, even without all of that!
When she approached the DA, I think tears had probably already started forming. Her offense was the same as mine, an expired inspection sticker, but she had not been able to renew her inspection within the allotted 20 days. The DA was a very personable man and she gained his pity if nothing else. She explained to him that her car would not pass inspection because she needed new tires but could not afford a whole set of new tires. As she was pleading her case, two ladies on the row in front of us were laughing...the more sorrowful her tale, the harder they laughed. I was embarrassed to even be sitting that close to them.
At one point, the elderly woman halfway turned to those of us in the pews and said, "One day, you will be old, too." That should have been humbling but these two ladies continued to laugh so much...kind of like my sissy and I have done at a funeral! A gentleman in the row ahead of these ladies was fed up with their laughter, though; he turned to them and simply said, "You know she is crying?"
The atmosphere changed very quickly, like lightning! The laughing stopped, even though just moments before it seemed they could not stop laughing for anything.
Then, I saw the most amazing thing....one of the ladies took out her checkbook. We could all hear the DA telling the elderly lady that her fine would only be $15 but the court fees she would have to pay would be at least $100. And in a flash, one of the laughing ladies was writing a check....to pay the court fees for the elderly lady!!!
My dear hubs walked out of the courtroom with a heavy heart....he would like to have had a way to buy the lady new tires so she could get her car inspected. However, I think God moved on those He had called out for that day! The elderly lady was so surprised by the generosity of the young lady that it brought fresh tears.
I know that God is always at work around us and sometimes He chooses us to be His vessel, but on this day, He chose a stranger to pay a burden that needed to be lifted. Have you seen His hand move lately?
Praise God from whom all blessings flow....
God's girl, Pamela