Greetings one and all…
A few weeks ago, I witnessed a scene that highlighted the fact that care is everywhere if we have eyes to see and ears to hear. What I saw and heard was hope-FULL and inspirational. The scenario was simple, yet sacred. Standing in line at the grocery store, I observed an encounter between the young man staffing the self-check line and an older couple checking out. The older gentleman was seated in a wheelchair. His wife was struggling to lift some heavy items from the cart in order to scan the bar codes. She was obviously frustrated and stressed by the situation. But she was seemingly reluctant to ask for help.
What Does Care Look Like?
The young man observed the situation and without hesitation offered to help in a very respectful and compassionate way. His approach was not demeaning or diminishing. Instead, he was kind and caring. Seemingly unhurried, the young man assisted with the groceries while chatting with the couple. He expressed a genuine interest in the couple—asking questions and intently listening to their responses.
- He took the time to see them.
- He honored them by hearing what they had to say.
- He assisted in completing their transaction.
- He cared for them.
Caring is Intuitive
A week later, I ran to the store for a few items. Checking out, I was delighted to see the same young man working the self-check line. Since there was no one else in line, I waved him over for a short conversation. I recalled what I had seen the week prior and expressed my gratitude for his kindness. He seemed a bit embarrassed and tried to shrug off the compliment. He said, “It wasn’t a big deal. Shopping for groceries shouldn’t be hard. So I did what I could to improve the process. Plus, I enjoyed talking with them. They made my day better.” Determined to make my point, I said, “And you made my day better by intuitively caring for another person. Thank you!” I wanted this young man to know that:
- I appreciate his ability and willingness to care for others (including me).
- His efforts are worthy of recognition and celebration.
- He is making a difference in the world – a positive, powerful force.
- I see him. I hear him. And I honor him.
You may be thinking that I am blowing this incident way out of proportion. Perhaps. But I don’t think so. It’s vitally important that we recognize, appreciate, and celebrate moments of caring. Otherwise, we become inured to the daily displays of care in the world, thus diminishing our awareness of and gratitude for expressions of care. We should ALL care that care is everywhere – and rejoice in that reality. So today, take a look around your home, neighborhood, faith community, and/or place of work. Ask yourself:
- Who is caring for whom?
- What does care look like?
- How do I honor those who care?
- How do I choose to care?
In the days and weeks to come, I hope you witness countless vignettes of “care everywhere.” May those moments fill you up, bring you joy, and inspire you to offer your caring heart to the world. Yes, care is everywhere. But we need to constantly replenish the supply. Take good care and blessings to you and yours……jane
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