Yesterday I entered a Subway shop like I do for many breakfasts. I hurriedly walked from my car to the warm shop where the clerk - so familiar with my standard order - started making my breakfast sandwich. The aroma of freshly baked bread was comforting.
I returned to my car and glanced around as I started to push the start button on my Nissan.
At that moment I saw a scene and my finger froze from pressing the ignition. I hadn't seen the man on the bench before this. He was doubled over, face looking down toward his shoes, as he sat on a bench. An elderly woman with grey hair was hovering over the unresponsive man, gently placing a warm jacket on his back and placing her hand on him, trying in a loving way to say "I care about you."
Why had I not noticed him? I was tending to my own needs and I failed to see the need of another.
I don't know who the woman was or why she cared. It may have been her son, strung out on drugs, for all I know.
The scene moved me nearly to tears: An old woman extending help to someone who few in our society would care about giving the time of day. She wasn't doing it for fanfare. Nobody was looking but me. She did it because she cared. Maybe she thought of him as her child in need.
I strongly suspect that he was simply a complete stranger and she just had compassion.
Without getting preachy, isn't that what tomorrow - Christmas - is all about? The world celebrates a Savior through a great event. God becomes a man incarnate and lives among us, teaches us to love and then dies for sins of mankind.
Yesterday's scene represented what we celebrate: Reaching down with compassion and demonstrating love in a practical way.
To heck with a blow-out season of gifts galore. I want to have a giving spirit like I saw yesterday every day of the year. 365 not just 1.
How do you feel? Let Jeff know at firstname.lastname@example.org.