“You won’t believe what I’m about to tell you, Keith! I didn’t know who to call except you.”
Since she’d convinced me that what she was about to say was something really juicy, I let her keep on keeping on.
”Are you sitting down?” she asked again, barely able to contain herself with the magnitude of what she was about to lay on me.
“Yeah, I’m sitting down – what is it?”
“Last night I went to a rock concert with a friend of mine and, after the show, we decided to go back to his house and hang out for a while. I thought I was into it but just a few minutes after I got there, my headspace shifted from wanting to party to wanting to leave — right away!
“Sorry, bud, but I have to go,” I told my friend as I headed for the door.
”What? — Why? It’s raining cats and dogs out there!”
”I don’t know why. I just know I have to right now!“
That didn’t give him much choice but to stand there waving at me as I backed out of his driveway.
As I turned on to the main street, I somehow ended up in a lane that wouldn’t allow me to make the right I’d made so many times before at that first stop light. So I decided to just keep going forward, make a few extra turns and get home that way.
But at the very next intersection, I got in the wrong lane again, so I decided to move along to the next light and then make my turn.
When I got there, I was aware of what I was doing but as I started to steer right, something inside of me said, ‘Don’t turn now. Go to the next light to take your right!’ The feeling (voice) was so strong and sure that, even though I didn’t know why I was doing it and I thought this whole thing was really, really strange, I decided to follow what voice was telling me to do.
Well, the minute did it, I realized that I’d put myself in a place where no one with any common sense or knowledge of the area would want to be. But that didn’t seem to matter because I still felt compelled to drive just a little further and take the next right, at which point the voice inside said, ’Go slow and turn on your brights.’ That’s when I heard myself scream, ’What in the world am I looking for?’
I swear to God, Keith, what happened next totally blew my mind. Out of nowhere, a little child wearing only a diaper ran out in front of my car. I immediately slammed on my brakes, shouted “Oh, my God,” then threw the car into park, jumped out and grabbed that precious child close to me, both of us crying and frightened. “Don’t you worry,” I told the little boy, “I’m here now and I won’t let you go!”
The police showed up just a couple of minutes after I called and one of them immediately took the boy out of my arms. While they were checking him out to make sure he wasn’t injured in any way, one of them asked me what had happened. As soon as I finished telling him what I’m telling you, he told me I could leave. “I’m afraid not, my friend, that just ain’t gonna happen!”
“What do you mean, ma’am?“
“Didn’t you pay any attention to what I just told you?“
“Yes, ma’am, I did. Why’re you asking me that?“
“Well, I believe I’m supposed to be with this child and I ain’t leavin’ ‘til his parents come for him — so you might as well give him back to me!“
“Okay, but that could be a while depending on when the report comes in that he’s missing.“
“Doesn’t matter…I’ll wait as long as I can. So please….” And I opened my arms to take him in.
“As soon as the boy was settled against me, the officer walked us over to his squad car and guided us into the back seat. The child was soon fast asleep, but not me and, after two hours of waiting, I was starting to nod out every few minutes. Besides, I knew I had to be at work in just a few hours, so, even though I didn’t want to let him out of my arms nor my sight, I knew I had to go. So I kissed his precious face and told him I loved him and I even felt that he said it back to me through the appreciation he held in his big blue eyes. As I was handing him back to one of the officers, he told me to be sure to give them my number so he could call me when he knew something.
“I was really relieved when I got the call the next day. What the officer told me is that it turns out that the boy’s family had come to Memphis from New Hampshire to visit relatives and that, on the night I found him, he had awakened around 2:30 and managed to let himself out of the house. For the next hour or so, this little 3-year-old managed to trudge a mile and half through the woods in the pouring rain with no shoes or clothes on until our paths met. The cop couldn’t tell me emphatically enough how thrilled his parents are to have their boy back and how grateful they are to me for what I did.”
After telling this most amazing story, my friend asked me if I thought that she had been prompted by some unseen force to rescue this child. I thought about her question and then I gave her some things to consider.
“What do you think?” I asked first. “Maybe you were rescuing yourself! But for sure the force guiding that experience was not unseen! Everything in it revealed itself, wouldn’t you say? It could be that your love and caring is so great that you summoned him to you and he was feeling his own calling to find you again so that you could be together at that moment in time.
When I first heard this story, and even now as I write it, it puts me in such a state of GRACE that my being explodes with a JOY that makes me cry a river. And that river seems to take me all the way to the Source that I’ve been searching for my whole life! I will forever be grateful to my friend for choosing me to share it with.
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