Saturday, February 2, 2013
A Nail in the Road
Opportunities Wandering Life’s Pathways
So my wife suggested that I need to lighten up for a blog or two…..said too much thinking can make a person’s brain hurt. How about running back to a variation on a topic from last summer. You may remember the posts about pennies from heaven last summer and fall. If you don’t you can dig into the archive if this one inspires you to do so.
To set the stage a bit, I often take the dogs out for a long walk early in the morning. That way, it feels like I have more of a reason to get my exercise than just moving my legs. I see and hear all sorts of things when I go…at least once the sun comes up enough to see. The other day I was walking my usual route, and happened to glance down. Nope, it wasn't money. It was a nail. Just an old rusty nail. I picked it up, put it in my pocket and brought it home to throw away. (I have to put that part in, because there are some people who think I don’t ever throw ANYTHING away!)
That isn't the first time I've picked up nails or screws along the side of the road. But it was early in this walk, and as I continued on my way, I got to thinking….always a dangerous proposition I know. I thought to myself, “You know, nobody driving by that spot will ever know I picked up that nail, but who knows, it may have just prevented somebody getting a flat tire.” And then I thought, “I hope somebody out there is picking up nails out where I drive, watching out for me, too.” Now normally, I wouldn't even bother to tell you I do this kind of stuff. (And you probably would just as soon not hear it, too!) But I ended up over at my cousin’s factory, and was telling him the story, then got a good chuckle. He said, “You know, I’m always picking up nails and screws, too. Especially over at the parking lot by the store. Seems like there’s always a nail or two that fell out of somebody’s truck.” Maybe this means the trait is hereditary. I wouldn't bet on it, though. But we laughed, and realized that, truthfully, we probably have prevented a flat or two down through the years.
In this day and age when everybody seems to be so out for themselves, for getting what they can get no matter who it affects, and where hostility, violence and road rage are rampant, maybe we need the antidote of doing something nice for people who will never know. And, doing those things whether anybody ever knows or not. (You wouldn't know either, except I needed a blog topic!) Like those bumper stickers that talk about random acts of kindness. Seems to me if more of us were taking time to watch out for one another, instead of finding ways to nitpick at each other, or demanding that our OWN “rights” don’t get trampled, we’d have a kinder world. I guess, to me, this is a lot like the places where Jesus talked about folks who give someone a cup of cold water, or who visit folks who are sick or in prison. In those cases, they find out later that God notices things like this. And God rewards things like this. But not because you do it seeking a reward. Because you do it as your way of showing God’s love to somebody in simple little ways.
One of the most impressive acts of kindness I ever saw was a young woman I knew who had a terrible case of MS. Nearly bed fast, scrawly handwriting, balance and speech ability seriously impaired, she used to send get well cards to people she knew in the hospital. I can’t tell you how many times I’d visit a person in the hospital who would pull her card out of the stack of cards they had and say, “Can you believe this? As hard as her life is, she took time to send ME a get well card.” I told her a time or two, but I don’t think she ever really realized how much those cards of hers touched the lives of others.
There are lots of ways to reflect the love and kindness of God to others, some more visible, some unseen. What are the ways YOU make your corner of the world brighter? Maybe it’s time to find some new ones, cause there are a lot of nails out there just waiting to flatten the tires of somebody’s life!
TL:dr Kindness in simple deeds never goes unnoticed by God.