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As They Walk Away

Mom was always anxious when our family would visit relatives and friends. Understandable with five kids in tow. Only one time do I remember breaking something that belonged to someone in their home. The little light catcher hanging from the lamp twirled around and around. Gently touching it, I was mesmerized, but, suddenly the tiny wire broke.  No one saw what happened. All motion stopped as it landed in my hand just before hitting the floor.  In that moment time stood still  for me.

For a little while I did nothing. But I knew that wasn’t right. Finally with it laying in my hand, I cautiously approached my mom’s friend and held out my hand to show her what I broke. As I began to explain, she began to laugh sweetly. She told me it was ok and she could fix it and not to worry. She took the burden of the broken from me.

Such a seemingly insignificant moment in my history.

Yet – that was fifty years ago. That old saying rings true and maybe I learned it that day. It’s not what you say to people they remember – it’s how they feel as they walk away from you.

What do people feel when they walk away from me?

How often do I miss opportunities to be an encouragement to others?

Today, I want to walk a little slower, sit a little longer, listen more carefully and share life a lot deeper.

How often is it possible for me to ease another’s anxiety – just like Mom’s friend did for me so many years ago. Even when they haven’t wronged me, many times I can be the listening ear that helps them work through something they have broken or a part of them that has been broken – as a caring, compassionate ear and heart.

Jesus is our best example of being that. Jesus took time for the seemingly mundane – the ones on the fringes – the ones no one paid attention to – the blind, sick and lame – all off to the side – the discarded – the lonely – the broken.

Notice the outer parts of the room. The back row. The one sitting alone in the coffee shop. The slumped shoulders, head down, no eye contact –  in the line at the grocery store. The parent at school who obviously doesn’t know anyone. May I become more aware.

Speaking with friends often brings light to my broken. Just through speaking the thoughts aloud I am able to process and produce solutions that have eluded me. May I become a better listener and do the same for others.

So take heart. Make it your goal to pay closer attention to what’s going on around you and in others whose paths cross yours daily. Become an observer. Take it to prayer. Share in life and lives around you.

Let’s make it our goal to change the world around us as people walk away and may they always remember how they felt as they left. May they always know our great example and our motivator is Jesus. May we always be a blessing in this crazy world around us!

1 Thessalonians 5:11 So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it.         The Message

“Lord, please let us be more aware of how we can present kindness to the world around us. Let us look to Your example and learn to care deeper. May we learn to love deeper, care with compassion and share You in our journeys everyday. Amen”

 

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