My family recently traveled to Lusaka; Zambia’s capital city. Lusaka is a highly modern and developed city containing over 1 million people located about 5 hours from Ndola (where we live). In a big city like Lusaka, a place we’d never been, in a country we’re still rather new to, what are the chances we’d meet someone we knew…?
There’s a restaurant here in Ndola called Spur my family really loves. It’s incredibly kid-friendly and the service is excellent. The first time we ate there, we had a waiter named Humphrey who turned out to be one of the best waiters we’ve ever had anywhere!
After eating at Spur a few times we started getting to know a few other employees there as well, but Humphrey remained our favorite waiter.
A few months later, we learned a new branch of Spur was opening up in a nearby city called Kitwe. Many of the Ndola branch employees were transferred there temporarily to train new employees and help with the opening of the new restaurant. Among the employees who transferred was Humphrey; along with another of our favorite waiters and a manager we knew well.
We went to Kitwe recently and decided to stop by the restaurant there hoping to see our friends. We found Michael (our other favorite waiter) and the manger we know, but no Humphrey.
After inquiring about Humphrey’s whereabouts, our manager friend thought he may have been in Livingstone (home of Victoria Falls) but wasn’t sure. He only knew Humphrey had gotten a better job somewhere else.
So can you imagine our surprise when we were in the mall in Lusaka and see, of all people, Humphrey!
There are at least three malls in Lusaka (and probably more) and my family was walking through one of them. We decided to stop in a store for a few minutes and after a bit, my mom and I decided to wait outside the door for the rest of my family.
We were both looking down and weren’t paying attention when just in front of us we hear a voice say, “Hello madams how are you?” I glanced up and opened my mouth to respond to the question, but instead my mouth gaped and I just stared for a second in amazement it was even possible we had run into him and finally said, “Humphrey!” He smiled broadly.
Mom was mid-sentence answering the question when she glanced up and realized who was standing in front of her: “I’m fine tha…HUMPHREY!!!”
He gave us both a quick hug and we talked for a few minutes. Dad and the boys came out of the store as well and we all visited for a short time, and it seemed providential we should’ve met. I was still simply shocked! I mean, what are the odds we’d run into someone from Ndola in the middle of Lusaka with over 1 million people when we didn’t even think he was there!?
After we separated and went on our way through the mall, we couldn’t stop thinking about how amazing it was we’d seen him! My parents pondered how only a few seconds’ difference in mom and I’s timing of coming out of the store…or a simple decision not to walk into that store in the first place would’ve potentially altered whether or not we even saw Humphrey.
Ultimately, there’s no explanation other than the Lord deciding our paths should cross. All odds were against us. We statistically shouldn’t have run into him; but we did!
Isn’t God amazing!?