Sunday afternoon I made a quick trip to the grocery store to grab a few items for a family dinner later in the day. I had just come from attending my first bi-lingual church service where the pastor shared an inspiring message about how we are all family, that even with our differences and disagreements we are all family.
As I looked around the room I knew there were those with whom I could not converse as I speak no Spanish and they spoke no English~ but yet as we caught eyes we knew we were family! This was a rich, rich reminder that served as an important backdrop to the remainder of my day.
Walking into the grocery store a ragged young man with piercing blue eyes sat in the gusty wind in front of the store. He had a dirty jacket and an old blanket. I said “good afternoon” in a perky fashion and made my way into the store.
I barely had a foot inside the store when I felt a huge dose of sadness that overwhelmed me. Here I was ready to buy amazing food items for our dinner and all I could do was pass him quickly and give him a perky Hello? Was giving him a smile the extent of my human ”family” connection to him? Ugh! I felt so disappointed in myself!
As I paid for my groceries I purchased a $50.00 Grocery store certificate and a Starbucks coffee. I was anxious as I rounded the corner and saw him still there huddled up in the cold. I sat down beside him and gave him my offerings, His beautiful blue eyes welled up with tears and he said, “ I felt invisible today” Thank you for paying attention to me. I hugged him and we said goodbye.
Driving out of the parking lot I looked his way only to see him weeping; hands covering his face. I was thankful for God’s graciousness to me by challenging me to respond to the amazing teaching I had received hours earlier – I was sad that God HAD to remind me.
What difference does my faith make in my day-to-day interactions?
I pray I can better live out the truth that” they will know we are Christians by our love”. Thought I’d be honest about my own struggle.