Friday, January 11, 2008

A Clear Focus.

Not that long ago, I had been shopping in Wal-mart. Once I had collected all of my "needful things" I headed to the check-out. There was a couple in front of me and as I waited to place my items on the belt, I realized that some of the gentleman's item had been left on the end instead of the belt itself and, therefore, were not moving forward. Unsure as to whether or not he wanted these items, I didn't want to assume and start piling on my things.

So I asked him, "Excuse me, Sir? Did you mean to put these on the belt?"

He: "Oh, yes. I'm sorry about that."

Me: "That's okay. Here, let me help you."

I then assisted him in getting the remaining items onto the belt, then turned toward my cart and began to unload my things, when he asked me, "So, how are you today?"

Me: "I'm doing great, thank you? And yourself?" I turned to retrieve more items.

He: "I'm blessed."

I spun back around and looked at him. "Did you say, 'blessed'?" I asked.

He nodded: "Yes, I did."

Me: "What a great answer! You know, if we all stopped to think about it, we would all answer that way."

He smiled and nodded in agreement. His things were totalled, he bid me a good day, and he and the woman he was with were on their way. But part of him remained with me. Did you ever meet someone, even for a brief moment and they left a part of themselves with you? You take that small piece and tuck it safely inside. Over time, it is absorbed into your very essence, your DNA and, with luck God's blessing, it becomes a part of you, yet ready to be left with someone else.

This is how it was with this man. I will never forget him because in that minute and a half that we spoke, he taught me what it really means to see clearly. Yes, I am blessed. Regardless of the never-ending To-do list, the children whom I cannot catch a break, the husband who sometimes "bugs me", the bills, the mess, the chaos, the static. In fact, I am not blessed in spite of it but because of it. Yes, I AM BLESSED.

Thank you, Lord, that my ever-chatty daughter has the ability to speak.
Thank you, Lord, that my perpetually hungry baby has the ability to eat.
Thank you, Lord, that my sometimes forgetful husband is HERE and is good to us all.
Thank you, Lord, that my disorganized and dusty home keeps us safe & warm.
Thank you, Lord, that my sometimes short-sighted self was able to meet a man who gave me perspective and a new outlook.

Who was this man? This man who just happened to forget some of his items on the end of the beltway. This man who asked me a simple question and returned mine with a profound answer. This man who had vision beyond the here & now. This man who summed up his life in one simple word - Blessed. And this man who held a cane in his hand - a cane that was white with a red tip. This man...

...was blind. And yet I've never met anyone with a clearer focus.


Laurel said...

Wow! What a great reminder to all of us to really see the gifts of our lives. I think that's what it means in Matthew when it says that the blessings of the Lord will be made manifest through the man who was blind. What an amazing experience. Thanks for sharing.

Madame Queen said...

Every time I start to feel stressed out about things -- we've had some super stressful things happening for the last year or so -- I stop to remind myself "At least I have a job. At least I have health insurance. At least we're all healthy. At least we have a place to live. At least we have food on the table." And I take a moment to say thanks for all these things.

Terry said...

Cool story. Thanks.

Thanks also for introducing me to 'Jesus Freak.' I'd never heard it before.

Lisa-Marie said...

Thank you.

One time while talking with a friend I said, "....I'm so lucky..." He stopped me and said, "You aren't lucky. You're blessed." He was right.