Jun 30

Helen Tyte


In a supermarket car park a priest, dressed in his black shirt and dog collar, found himself in a spot of trouble. He had rushed into the store for a few groceries, but had managed to lock his car keys inside the vehicle in his haste. He stood by the driver’s door wringing his hands and looking around for somebody who could help him. A young man in a baseball cap was sauntering through the parking lot, head down and hands in the pockets of his jeans.
The priest called out to him and the young man stopped dead and looked around for the voice. The priest called again, and the man pointed to himself and shouted back, ‘Who? Me?’
‘Yes,’ replied the priest, ‘Can you help me, please?’ He went on to explain what had happened and how he was going to be late for the wedding he was due to preside at that afternoon.
The young man agreed to help, and pulled a coiled up piece of wire out of one of his pockets. In no time at all the door was open and the priest was thrilled to see that there were no scratches or marks on the paintwork. ‘Remarkable,’ he said to the young man. ‘Where did you learn to do that so neatly and quickly?’
The young man turned very red and muttered something under his breath. The priest asked him to repeat what he’d said, and this time the answer was clear.
Still blushing, the man repeated, ‘I was a car thief. I’ve just come out of prison, but I’m going straight, I’m never going back in.’
The priest smiled and told the young man not to be ashamed, ‘I prayed to God when I realised my keys were locked in my car, I asked for someone to help me. And who did God send?’
Still very shamefaced, the young man replied, ‘A criminal.’
‘No,’ replied the priest, ‘God sent me a professional!’

We all sin, but are redeemed in Christ. We have all been given unique gifts to help in God’s mission in the world. Today, think about your gifts and talents, and how you can use them to help others.

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