With quick steps I entered T.J. Maxx. Mustn’t waste a minute in December. Too much to do, right?
First order of business: get a cart. The first one I grabbed was stuck to another. Couldn’t get them apart.
Just as I reached for one in the second row, a cheery woman with sparkling eyes approached from the side, ready to return her cart. “Here,” she said. “Take mine.”
“Thank you very much!” I replied. As she turned the cart to face me, I couldn’t help but notice how smoothly it made the circle. “Wow! No wobbly wheels or squeaks!”
I tested the cart myself, turning it one way and then another. This was the Cadillac of carts. Very fluid and responsive. Quiet.
Mrs. Lovely Lady chuckled a bit at my excitement. “Yes, it’s a great cart. I really hate to leave it,” she added wistfully.
Now I was chuckling. “You are very kind to pass it on to me.”
“Well, pay it forward,” she called and headed to the exit.
That little episode got me to thinking. Mrs. Lovely Lady had paid forward to me much more than a kind deed. She also gave:
- the gift of good cheer and laughter
- A friendly moment of camaraderie, in spite of the fact we were strangers to one another
- A large serving of the fruit of the Spirit – his love, joy, kindness, and goodness
As a result, I felt incredibly refreshed and invigorated. Just that brief encounter made a huge difference in the condition of my spirit.
And I pray that kind woman who passed on her cart experienced the same uplift.
* * * * * * * * * *
Lord, help me to pay forward many kindnesses during this Christmas season, and beyond into 2014. May I reflect you – your love, joy, kindness, and goodness—with plenty of good humor! And one more thing, Father. I don’t know who that woman was in T. J. Maxx, but you do. (Such a fantastic truth—your omniscience!!) Would you bestow a special blessing upon that lovely lady, for her delightful demeanor and thoughtfulness? Thank you, Father!
(photo credits: www.marketplace.org; http://www.unfadingelegance.blogspot.com.)