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Dr. Fred Craddic tells of the time he was asked to speak in Winnipeg, Canada. While he was there he stopped into a deli get something to eat. He said the place was packed but people moved over and made room for him. Many people in there where just in to get out of the cold.

A few minutes later someone opened the door and a shout came from inside the deli that said, "Hey, shut that door you're letting all the warm air out."

In came a rather unkempt woman, and a couple of people made some room for her. A large man with a greasy apron came over and asked in a loud voice, "What do you want?"

She said "I'll just take a glass of water."

He sat the water in front of her and said, "Now what do you want?"

She said, "The water is fine."

He said, "Look, lady, there is paying customers in here. Either you going to have to order something else or get out."

She said, "Can I just stay in out of the cold?"

He said, "No, you have to order something or leave."

Slowly she scooted out of her seat and started to leave.

But when she did the person on her right and left also got up to leave. Then the persons on each side of them got up to leave. And pretty soon everyone started to leave, and the man in the greasy apron said, "All right, come on back. You can stay." She sat down and he even gave her a bowl of soup.

Craddic asked the man beside him, "Who is that lady?"

The man said, "I don't know, but if she's not welcome, I'm not welcome."

Craddic said, "You know, as I started to eat that soup it wasn't so bad. The matter of fact it reminded me of something I had eaten before and I couldn't figure out why it tasted so familiar as I ate that bowl of soup."

He continued, "I left that little deli and I looked back at that woman sitting there in that atmosphere. I remembered what that soup tasted like. It tasted like the bread and wine of communion."

Even when the world shows this kind of love, it is easy to recognize that this is what the Father had in mind all along. That's what we remember each time we take communion. And that is what we should seek to be like in our every day lives.

(From a sermon by Jeff Strite, Love Me Nots, 2/21/2011)

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