Wayne Weekly “Sylvia…1596 Was a Very Good Year”

Written by on March 2, 2016

The other morning I made a quick stop for my wife to pick up a few groceries at a local Tops store. I hurriedly raced my short nosed cart up and down the isles as if I were on a scavenger hunt. Picking up the item and checking it off of my mentally simulated grocery list.


I spied a checkout line with only one customer and quickly turned in to secure my place in line.


There she was, Sylvia. That was the name on her Tops name tag. With a smile she asked if I had found everything and soon totaled up what was due. Sylvia clearly annunciated and said $15.96, followed by, “1596, now that was a good year!” Huh? What did she mean? I asked Sylvia what happened in 1596. She replied, “Oh, I don’t know…probably something good.” I responded with the fact that in 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue (which she chimed in finishing the well know ditty in unison with me), but I don’t know anything about 1596. Sylvia laughed.


“Do you know what the best year was?” I asked, “It was the year zero  because Jesus was born.” (let’s forget calendar problems here). Sylvia looked up and stared. I then stated, “Isn’t God a wonderful God to send His Son to die for us?” My cashier thoughtfully said, “yes, and we celebrate Easter soon.”


I took advantage of the moment and told Sylvia that I worked at a Christian radio station out of Syracuse and she could hear the station at 102.9 FM. I then invited her to listen in. She said she would have to write 102.9 down…and she did. We exchanged “good byes” and “have a good days”.


Opportunities to plant seeds come along in just everyday situations. Perhaps Sylvia will really tune in and hear the Word of God, the inspirational music, the friendly voices of our announcers at Mars Hill. Perhaps Sylvia will recognize truth and God will draw her to the foot of the cross. Or, perhaps Sylvia had come to know the Savior already, but the less than 60 second conversation helped her to refocus and give thanks to God. Perhaps someday I will know what that divine appointment was all about.


And to think, it all began in an unplanned moment in time, because of a receipt total, in a Tops store line, in a quick stop to pick up a few groceries.


  1. Yes, Sylvia, that was indeed a “good year”.


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