Thanks Stranger

Soccer, Story Time, and the Red Elephant. That was the morning for the Sprague family. I forgot Caedmon’s walker at home, so I got a good workout helping him play soccer. Can you imagine if you had to depend on someone else to bring your legs for you? That’s another post for another day. Today’s is about being grateful.

If irony can be sweet, then today was Kool-Aid. We were enjoying our free appetizer of Boneless Teriyaki Chicken Wings and I was thinking about something I would do if I owned a restaurant. Every day, I would surprise a table by giving them their entire meal on the house. I thought it might be a fun way to encourage my wait staff. The waiter who performed the best one day got to comp a table the next. They might get a little better tip and that party would leave with a very good feeling. I was quite proud of my marketing genius. (If you own a restaurant, especially Outback or Carrabas, feel free to steal my idea and use it whenever my family shows up, we will be the abnormal ones.)

As I ate the last piece of pepperoni pizza, which happened to be about two too many, I asked our waiter to bring me the bill. Kyle walked up and said, “There was a man here about 45 minutes ago who paid for your lunch.” How awesome is that! I asked if he covered Kyle’s tip as well and, sure enough, he had. What a great blessing. Our appetizer was free and we all just had waters, so our bill was only about $20, but it felt like we had been given so much more. If you are out there kind Red Elephant man, thank you from the Sprague’s!

The book of Hebrews says we should consider how we might spur one another on toward love and good works, and that is my intention in sharing what I am about to share. Once Jeni and I finally got our personal finances under control and eliminated all of our debt, we began to give more. One of the things we enjoy doing is what that man did for us. We set cash aside to bless someone during the month when we are out eating. There is no rhyme or reason to our little surprises other than we enjoy being secret givers. I hope those folks feel as good as I felt today.

We spend a lot of time on this blog discussing the abnormalities of our physical bodies, but what if we were intentionally abnormal with our generosity? Can I encourage you to plan on being generous? It is a fun, rewarding effort in faith and you will desire to do it repeatedly. Happy sharing!


  1. Nice post Ryan. The kindness of strangers can really brighten the day and is too frequently a lost art. I too applaud the man that paid for your meal today.
    And that is a great idea about comping one table each day, and I imagine a restaurant that started that practice would see an increase in both new and repeat business.

  2. How wonderful. This truly inspires me, I’m so lost in my own feelings of grief from losing my mom and grandmother within three days of each other, that I forget to think of others. People have been generous to FSU in moms memory lately, so now I need to give back. Thank you for this story, I will put it into action soon!

  3. I also enjoy having the opportunity to give to others. Weird the timing of this blog as Ryan and I have already shared.

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