Most people I talk to and sometimes with and even more, from, I’ve never seen before and more than likely, pushing definite, will never see again.
Thought of that this morning—okay the 13th of January and a Friday—which for some means a curse’s a-comin’ and for me, simply a number between 12 and 14 [I never was beyond basic in math]—when reading this paragraph from Tom Ehrich, in which he themes when occasionally “getting it right”:
“Yesterday, for example, during a day trip to Manhattan, I sat down in Irma’s chair at Allen Edmonds for a shoe shine and asked about her children. She asked about mine. We talked on even ground. I don’t fully understand her life as an immigrant, nor does she understand my life. That’s okay. We just need to inquire and listen, take each other seriously, get beyond stereotypes and caricatures.”
Some examples with simply a dose of a smile and a nod of gratitude.
We get our mail about 1 mile away—hundreds of boxes. Most of the time, Maria slots the mail. We chat some—because I enjoy that—and she LOVES picts of recent fishing trips. Yesterday you’d never tell anyone here to “stay warm.” Was almost 80. But the wind wasn’t absent. Her hair got wind-spiked. She tried to tamp it down, “Oh, my hair has never been worse and the mail load is like Christmas.” A smile, “Maria, you help us…and for that, you are never ‘worse.’ Simply know this is not a fashion runway.”
Then driving to the store, walking the sidewalk was a mother, pushing a baby cart, her other child, about 5 years old holding on to their dog’s leash. I had to stop, rolled down the window, “Ma’am. I don’t have a camera, but you and your family and your dog protecting you? What a great picture.” She didn’t scowl…a beaming smile and word of appreciation.
The moment. The chance to bring value. To bring caring. To bring affirmation. Even when the grocery store door needed pulling to open, I arrived at the same time as another shopper, held the door open and smiled, “Sir, your timing is perfect.”
Okay, enough of this mirroring my point. But not to not offer…as you go along, even at your workplace, in your home, after worship, when shopping, getting the mail…WHEREVER…don’t be so self-wrapped that you are the world’s smallest package. See. Look. Care.
And let the moment be instructive…for the moment, when added to the minute, hour, day, month, year, lifetime? The moment adds up…again and again.