Poem – Just Checking in Today

*A Minister passing through his church*
*In the middle of the day,
Decided to pause by the altar*
*To see who came to pray.
Just then the back door opened,
And a man came down the aisle,
The minister frowned as he saw the man
Hadn’t shaved in quite a while.
His shirt was torn and shabby,*
*And his coat was worn and* *frayed,*
*The man knelt down and bowed his head,*
*Then rose and walked away.*
*In the days that followed at precisely noon,*
*The preacher saw this chap,
Each time he knelt just for a moment,
A lunch pail in his lap.*
*Well, the minister’s suspicions grew,
With robbery a main fear,
He decided to stop and ask the man,
‘What are you doing here?’*
*The old man said he was a factory worker*
*And lunch was half an hour.
Lunchtime was his prayer time,
For finding strength and power. *
*I stay only a moment
Because the factory’s far away;
As I kneel here talking to the Lord,
This is kinda* *what I say:*
*’I JUST CAME BY TO TELL YOU, LORD,
HOW HAPPY I HAVE BEEN,
SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHERS FRIENDSHIP
AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.
DON’T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY,
BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERYDAY.
SO, JESUS, THIS IS BEN,
JUST CHECKING IN TODAY.’ *
*The minister feeling foolish,
Told Ben that it was fine.
He told the man that he was welcome
To pray there anytime.*
*’It’s time to go, and thanks,’ Ben said
As he hurried to the door.
Then the minister knelt there at the altar,
Which he’d never done before.*
*His cold heart melted, warmed with love,
As he met with Jesus there.
As the tears flowed down his cheeks,
He repeated old Ben’s prayer: *
*’I JUST CAME by TO TELL YOU, LORD,
HOW HAPPY I’ have BEEN,
SINCE WE FOUND EACH OTHERS FRIENDSHIP
AND YOU TOOK AWAY MY SIN.
I DON’T KNOW MUCH OF HOW TO PRAY,
BUT I THINK ABOUT YOU EVERYDAY.
SO, JESUS, THIS IS ME,*
*JUST CHECKING IN TODAY.’ *
*Past noon one day, the minister noticed
That old Ben hadn’t come.
As more days passed and still no Ben,
He began to worry some.*
*At the factory, he asked about him,
Learning he was ill.
The hospital staff was worried,
But he’d given them a thrill.*
*The week that Ben was with them,
Brought changes in the ward.
His smiles and joy contagious.
Changed people were his reward.*
*The head nurse couldn’t understand
Why Ben could be so glad,
When no flowers, calls or cards came,
Not a visitor he had.
*The minister stayed by his bed,
He voiced the nurse’s concern:
No friends had come to show they cared.
He had nowhere  left to turn.*
*Looking surprised, old Ben spoke up*
*And with a winsome smile;’
The nurse is wrong, she couldn’t know,
He’s been here all the while.’*
*Everyday at noon He comes here,
A dear friend of mine, you see,
He sits right down and takes my hand,
Leans over and says to me: *
*’I JUST CAME BY TO TELL YOU, BEN,
HOW HAPPY I HAVE BEEN,
SINCE WE FOUND THIS FRIENDSHIP,
AND I TOOK AWAY YOUR SIN**. *
*I THINK ABOUT YOU ALWAYS
AND I LOVE TO HEAR YOU PRAY,*
*AND SO BEN, THIS IS JESUS,
JUST CHECKING IN TODAY**.’*