The pandemic has been especially hard on social butterflies this last year. So many people scurry to get from one place to another as efficiently as possible that those who enjoy shooting the breeze are often left without eager participants.
But not everyone is going through life with blinders on — and that’s a good thing. A kind-spirited word or comment here or there is needed now more than ever, and might just make all the difference.
Justen Crumpton from Hueytown, Alabama, is one of those people who enjoy talking to complete strangers. At times, that has annoyed her family, but in November it had a wholly unexpected effect.
The mother of four (who had just had her fourth) posted about the interaction on Facebook.
“I’m thankful for the kindness of a stranger,” she shared on Nov. 7. “Yesterday, my mom, sister and I went shopping to try and finish up Christmas shopping. If you know me at all, you know, I love to insert myself into other’s conversations, EVEN IF THEY ARE COMPLETE STRANGERS! This drives my sister CrAzY.”
As they walked along after doing some shopping, Crumpton noticed two men standing near a Von Maur UGGs display that was highlighting a particular pair she’d had her eye on for five years.
Seeing her opportunity for a little levity, she paused to speak to them.
“I stopped and jokingly said ‘If you are shopping for your girl then get her these’ and pointed to a certain pair,” she later wrote. “Then I told them I have been asking for them for five years. I laughed and started to walk away.
“The man said ‘FIVE YEARS!’ I turned around and laughed some more and said ‘yes!’ Then he said ‘oh and you have a baby. (I was wearing Beau in a baby wrap) Wait right there.’
Totally unexpectedly, the man purchased the shoes on the spot, and then presented them to Crumpton.
“Then he proceeded to go get an associate from the store and BOUGHT THE UGGS FOR ME!!!!!” Crumpton continued. “Right there in the middle of the store! I was in shock!”
“He simply said just pay it forward. His daughter that was with him told me he grew up an orphan and turned his life into something and he always wants to give to others.
“Spread kindness like confetti! I may not be able to surprise someone with UGGS but I hope I can make someone’s day soon!”
“I really felt guilty walking away with the shoes, but in the end, I just felt like it — just God just moved through him and just … It was just a blessing,” she said. “A huge blessing.”
Her post has gotten 11,000 reactions and 4,700 shares, and she has vowed to do her best to honor the man’s wishes and pay it forward.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.