Thankfully, the parents were far too jubilant in their celebrating to take serious offense. They mostly laughed and kept celebrating, while the comment was only met with a slightly disbelieving "Are you serious?" from one of the dads.
The three older ladies were quick to reinforce the fact that they were indeed serious.
"Come on, we have to go" she told her kids.
"But why?" came the all too familiar voice of one of her two tiny toddlers.
"Because some people think you're being rude."
"Because I guess they were never kids themselves." came their mom's surprisingly happy reply.
The older ladies just couldn't resist. "Our parents never would have let us act like that when we were kids." I tried to give her a "Are you honestly saying this?" look, but I think she thought it was a look of agreement. So before she left, she began continuing her complaints to me.
"They're just being kids" I said to her.
"Well it's the parents" she said.
"I don't think they were doing anything wrong." came my calm reply.
One more older man complained to me as well as he headed out the door, to which I again responded "They were fine."
One of the moms who was still hanging around with her kids evidently heard me stand up for her because when I glanced over my shoulder at them, she told me "Thank you!" I smiled to myself and to God and thanked him for the opportunity I'd had to be Jesus to these moms around me at Tim Horton's in such a simple way.
A few minutes later, the mom walked up to me with her kids before they left and asked her cute little son to say "thank you" to me. He did his best. "Thanks for being a kid" I replied with a smile. Then she placed a Tim Horton's Gift Card on the table in front of me and thanked me herself. "It's nice to have an advocate for once" she said. "Have a great day!"
I was so excited that God had answered my prayers as I had been sitting there that morning, asking him to give me opportunities to show who he is to the people around me. Then an older couple sitting directly in front of me began talking with me too.
"You must have done something nice" the lady said to me. I explained what had happened, and she said "Well that must make you feel good." To which I explained that I'm just doing my best to live for God and whatever happens happens.
"That looks like a Bible you're reading" she said, to which I responded that indeed it was. "What church do you go to?"
I asked them in turn whether they attended a church, and they had in the past in Ireland, but not so much recently. She began to tell me how she thought everyone really worships the same God, and it doesn't matter what name they give him as long as it works for them. I was able to explain to her that I believe God wants us to know exactly who he is, and that most different religions actually fundamentally disagree on this point and therefore cannot simultaneously be accurate. I shared how I believe God came down to earth in the person of Jesus and gave us the Bible for exactly this reason: to show us who He is so that we can get it right. And how his sacrificial death for us is the only way that we can come back into a relationship with him as he desires for us to do.
She didn't seem to know what to say to any of that.
Before they left, I offered her a short, free book called "Soul Cravings Prequel" and a little booklet entitled "Knowing God Personally." She gratefully took them and I am praying reads them. Who knows what God could do in her life.
After all, this was a morning full of "divine appointments." I'm so thankful God gave me the grace to be able to respond to them.
You can too.