Saturday, July 11, 2009

The Good Sa-Martian

On my way home from work today, I made a pit stop at QuikTrip for a drink. As I was leaving, a little old lady, probably in her late 70s, was trying to leave as well. She was carrying to drinks, two hot dogs, and a bag of chips, and was struggling to get the door pushed open. I quickly scooted around her and got the door for her. I headed toward my car and as I opened my door, I saw her struggling with the same dilemma as she stood at the driver's side door of her car. Her husband, who looked much older and quite sickly, sat waiting in the passenger sit. I shut my door, hurried over to her vehicle to assist her again.

I share this story not to pat myself on the back, but because of what the lady said through her open window as I walked away. The lady first just simply said, "Thank you." I turned around and replied, "Your very welcome, ma'am." It was what she said next, that stuck with me all the way home. She asked me in a half joking tone, "What planet are you from anyone? Nobody does stuff like that anymore."

All I could think about from that point on was what has happened to our society that would make an incident like this such an anomaly. What I did wasn't difficult. It took very little time, maybe 45 seconds. It didn't cost me anything. However, it did cause the lady to exert extra energy when she turned her straight face into a smile. It did cause me to feel a great deal of joy knowing I brightened a complete stranger’s day. More importantly than bringing a smile to someone's face or giving you a warm fuzzy feeling, we please God when we go out of our way to help others.

The apostle Paul spoke to this in his letter to the Galatians. So let's not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don't give up. Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone - especially to those in the family of faith. Galatians 6:9-10 (NLT)

I would like to think that this lady is just a pessimist. I would hope that what took place in the QuikTrip parking lot was not an isolated situation, but took place in thousands of locations around the world today. I would expect that if someone saw my grandparents in a similar situation would do the same thing I did, and not just get in his car and drive off. But I can't shake the fact that she may be on to something.

Hold the door a little longer to let a few extra people through. Give the guy sitting on the street some spare change. Help the neighbor lady take her trash out to the curb. You might get a smile, or you might not. You may or may not walk away feeling any different. But I guarantee that your Heavenly Father will notice and He will smile, and that makes it all worth it.

1 comment: