Ah, finally at home, and at my own desk and with internet! Yeah. It is good to be home, and the gift of community is truly a blessing.
I remember in days past after a long event or absence, I would come home to an empty house. That was it; on to the next project! I really didn’t get a chance to savor the beauty of all the graces of those days. This time, however, I was greeted by so glad you are home; how was everything?; and now we will have some life in the house. I was thrilled to receive the report – though I am not sure everyone was as excited about the ‘noise’ returning!
Everyone needs experience affirmation and feel worthwhile. Of course, this brings to mind a true story worth sharing. Again, during a conversation with a friend, she shared with me the story of a schizophrenic man who was walking through the neighborhood, trying to get some store owners to sell his soy candles. After everyone else had refused, he came upon my friend; she agreed to sell them in her store. At that time, he could not even look her straight in the eye. A relationship developed and she was able to get him into some programs, give him an old pickup truck, and find him decent housing. All of this gave him a sense of worth beyond measure. He now takes the elderly in his building to doctor’s appointments, or shopping, or just out and about. He continues to make his candles – I now have a few of them myself – and was able to donate several dozen to a past golf tournament benefiting Haiti. It is truly amazing what a little kindness can do!
We all need to feel like we have worth, and sometimes we forget that others need the same kindness and affirmation as we do. How do I approach people I don’t really know? Do I give them a chance to show me what they are capable of, or do I immediately judge them? Do I offer them a ‘hand UP’ or is it easier to offer them a ‘hand OUT’ and send them on their way? Do they tend to move me out of my comfort zone? Again, how do we treat others? I truly want to treat others like I want to be treated – period! But I know I have a long way to go, so each day I must practice, practice, practice.
May you have a great week giving people a ‘hand UP’ and not just a ‘hand OUT’. Keep in mind these words from Fr. Tom Haggerty of Sts. Phillip and James Church shared over last week’s Sunday service: “By cultivating kindness, we will learn to live with kindness. Let’s strive together for a kinder world!”
Till next week,