Here again I go with a lesson I learned on one of my walks. I start off early each morning, have my headphones on, moving fast. Usually though, I pray for the first 1/2 mile or mile , so no sound until I get further down my route . On this morning I concluded my prayers by asking God to let me be a blessing to someone today. Then I take off full force , ready to walk my big hills , ready to do all the important ,( not ), tasks that I had planned for my day.
Then , coming down a hill...I see HER.
It was an elderly woman I had met many years ago ,( you know the neighbors that don't know who you are when they get very old), I only see her every now and then anymore...and she is not doing very well in the mental sharpness category right now. She is across a wide expanse of the street, cars are coming and going in the early morning commute between us.
I keep walking fast, still glancing at her to my far right...and heaven forbid...looks like she needs something.
Drats to my busy day. I then start to rationalize that she is just roaming around the street like she likes to do, that I don't really need to stop and talk to her. So I raise my arm to wave hello and goodbye all at once...then double-drats...I see she is coming STRAIGHT at me.
( When I retold this story to my husband he is saying at this point , " GINA ! " )
I stop for her, turn off my headphones and she comes across the street, and at this point I see she needs me.
She has her gray hair all piled in a large bun, her cane, her robe on...and a large envelope in her hand. She reaches me and I smile at her , a smile of ' Hurry up , I want to keep moving.' When she is right beside me she starts telling me about how she can't hear anything because her hearing aid batteries went dead, people have been calling her on the phone, she can't hear them...she is quite distraught. She then asks me if I can change her batteries in her hearing aid for her ? I know I looked down in my hands when she took it out of her ear ...dropped it there , and then thrust the large envelope in my hands with the extra batteries, and I froze for a few moments.
I have never HELD a hearing aid, seen one up close, I had NO CLUE what to do with one or how to change the battery. So I then did what I knew I had to do.
I prayed hard.
I looked down at that worn hearing aid in my hand, opened the envelope and got a battery...and then said to God , " I do not know how to do this, please help me do this for her."
At this point she is half standing in the road, I am fumbling around on the sidewalk, cars going past , and I get to work. Amazingly, I got the old battery out, got the new one in...and handed it to her. She put it back in her ear, I then changed the battery of the other hearing aid she had...and she was thanking me. She could hear again ! At this time, one of her direct neighbors came over and got her, took her back across the street and took her to her home...she was leaning on her arm, telling the neighbor the story of how she couldn't hear and then came outside looking for help.
And found me.
My bug collector w/ his tiny bug
It made me realize as I continued my walk that morning, that I asked God to let me be a blessing...and He did. Not that I passed any great test of being wonderful to that woman , I feel like I failed in the " willingness " department or ' putting others first ' department...but I did accomplish the task He needed me to do for her.
I also realized that could easily be me one day, all of us.
Everyday we all have those SMALL annoyances and inconveniences that we do not understand are moments to bless someone. We all think we have to do something really grand, or time-consuming to demonstrate God's love to someone else. I am learning that it is the smaller gestures of life , like opening a door for someone, helping a neighbor by pulling a large limb off their yard when you walk by, throwing their paper closer to the front door, letting some num-chuck driver get ahead of us in line without getting angry , smiling at someone in your office that is having a bad time in their lives right now. There are endless possibilities to bless in small ways.
I am sure there is more that we could do for people , but we skip over the small things in life ...always rushing , always trying to get to where we need to be.
The problem is where we need to be , is WHERE WE ARE AT THAT MOMENT.
There God can USE you for something small , that can change someone's day.
Lesson learned for this terribly imperfect Christian woman on a sunny morning
in the Deep South.
I think God probably scored me with a C- on that one.
Bless someone in a small way today , I know you can,
" The commandments...are summed up in this one rule; Love your neighbor as yourself. Love does no harm to it's neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. " Romans 13:9-10