The other night, my brother called me to share an invite.
Rick Warren, pastor-leader and best-selling author of “The Purpose Driven Life” (PDL), was going to give a talk and my brother was going to listen.
Kuya was quick to add that Rick Warren recently gave the invocation for Barack Obama’s inauguration.

This reminds me of a story that happened a few years ago.

I read the Purpose Driven Life in 2006. My mom gave me the book as a gift.
The book had served me well for a time when I was soul searching.

Around a year later, I found the book among my things after moving to a new house.
I was cleaning up my house and de-cluttering to make space for new things.
I was making space both in my physical world and in my mind and heart.

Holding the Purpose Driven Life book in my hand, it that reminded me of a turbulent time in my life.
I remembered how the book had contributed to my healing.
It was time to pass on my book, for it to bless another soul the way it had blessed me.

I wrapped the book in a clear plastic bag. The recipient of the book would easily see the contents of the bag.

Driving with Purpose

I took the book with me one summer morning in April as I drove from Cavite to Manila.

When I reached the tollgate at the Coastal highway,
I rolled down my window and greeted the toll-gate lady attendant: “Hello!” and gave her my toll fee.
She reached for my payment and gave me a faint smile — a smile that was a notch more than her usual poker face, I would think.

She expertly punched her cash-register, prepared my change and receipt then adroitly handed them over to me through her tollgate window.

I reached for the change with my left hand and said: “Thank you!”
I quickly put out my right hand and presented her the book Purpose Driven Life and exclaimed: “Merry Christmas!”
It was summer. I don’t know if YOU find the greeting odd. But the toll-gate attendant and I knew it WAS Christmas :-) .

Her face glowed, her eyes burst into a delighted smile.
She obviously recognized the purple book. She was pleased like a little girl being given a barbie doll!
She reached for the purple book and sweetly beamed: “Ay, thank youuuuu!!!!!”

It was as if her long-time prayer had been answered that day!

Oh, you should have seen the happiness in her face!

Oh, you should see the happiness in MY face everytime I remember and retell that story.

Each encounter with another human being
contributes to our lives.

It’s up to us what kind of contribution we will make
and what kind of contribution we will take.

Merry Christmas!

ka edong
purpose-driven living

2 thoughts on “Purpose Driven Toll Gate

  1. that book also helped me a lot way back in 2005 when i no longer feel like living, but i still have the book. i think i’ll do what you did. pass it on to someone who might have a need for it.:)

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