He comes to this same restaurant every day and tries to sit in the same booth in the corner. Every day for the past two years and for almost three years before he went to the restaurant on the other side of town, closer to his house.
I was up looking for the green beans at the buffet and Michael struck up a conversation after the man whispered "Amen".
Car salesman. That's what he was. He was also married for 64 years. She's been gone almost five.
He thinks about her every minute of every day. That's what he said and that's what I believe.
He can't wait to see her again. That's what he's doing in this place - just waiting until he can see her again.
He goes to church three times a week and talks to Him every day. He knows that no matter what you have done in life, that is the most important. To know Him and talk to Him. To live for Him.
We were done with our meal but continued to visit across the booth. He stood up to go find a dessert and stood there for a minute with his hands in his Levi britches that covered his ninety two year old legs.
I scooted over, turned toward him and he sat down without missing a word. I watched him as he talked. Took in every wrinkle; saw how the skin started at the top of his head and then draped down over his jaws and under his chin.
His eyes were sunk deep. I'm sure they were once bright blue; they are now cloudy.
He talked of how he encourages his two older sisters to not get down because they all will be going home soon. So anxious for the Reunion. So anxious to see their parents.
So anxious to see his bride.
As I listened I was praying that I would be like that. Bearing fruit in old age. Never tiring of encouraging those who need an encouraging word. Praying that I never feel like I've done my duty and need to retire from it.
So Ray, I hope you get to see her soon. But not before your job here is done.
Well done, good and faithful servant.