This morning, I watched a touching video. It involved a supermarket employee who, realizing that a young man was totally engrossed in watching him stock the dairy case, invited the young man to help him. The employee handed the man cartons of milk and orange juice one at a time and the young man (who it turned out was autistic) carefully lined them up for about half an hour, his delight evident in the huge smile on his face. Someone watching took a video of the action on her phone and posted it on social media. I'm not sure the employee realized how much his kindness meant to the young man or even if anyone was watching but when a news station came in to interview him and asked him why he did what he did, the worker shook his head and said, "It's just who I am."
A familiar adage goes something like this: "Our true character is that person we become when no one is watching." It is startlingly easy to let the stresses and disappointments of each day color the way we treat family, friends and strangers. How often do we ignore those around us because we are absorbed in our own cares or let our irritation carry over into what we say and do? Remembering who we are - or more wonderfully - whose we are helps us curb those tendencies and reach out to others with the compassion and tenderness of Jesus, who invites us to be like him. Easier said than done? Sure, but we have a lifetime to practice!
This coming Sunday, August 5, is Zion's Homecoming. We will have a joint worship service at Zion at 10:30 am, followed by a potluck lunch. Please come and invite someone to join you!
Have your children or grandchildren bring their backpacks and/or school supplies on Sunday and we'll bless them. We'll also bless the supplies you bring for Floyd County schools.
Later Sunday afternoon, from 4:00 to 6:00, Oak Grove Pavilion welcomes Larry Sigmon and Martha Spencer and their old time dance music. Martha is a member of the White Top Mountain Band and she and Larry are sure to have the dance floor packed. Come enjoy!
Compassion asks us to go where it hurts, to enter into places of pain, to share in brokenness, fear, confusion, and anguish. Compassion challenges us to cry out with those in misery, to mourn with those who are lonely, to weep with those in tears. ... Compassion means full immersion in the condition of being human.
- Henri J.M. Nouwen