Monday, September 3, 2012

What Will They See?

Even when you think no one is watching, someone may have you in their sights.

Her name was Nancy. She sat across the table from me during our newly organized women’s Bible study group. After a particularly intense session, dealing in part with our responses to stressors as Christian women, Nancy looked me straight in the eye. 

“This conversation reminds me of the first time I saw you in person,” she said. “We were in the grocery store. Your daughter ( a toddler) was acting up.”

"Oh, no," I thought, as I braced myself for what was to come.You see, in my younger, hectic, sleep-deprived life as a full time journalist and mother, I wasn’t always at my best at the end of the day with a cranky toddler in tow. Was my testimony about to be blown, right here in the spotlight of the Bible study group?

“I was standing behind you in line,” recalled Nancy. “Your daughter was trying to climb out of the shopping buggy. She was reaching for this candy bar and that package of gum. She was fussy and was getting louder and louder. I watched as you leaned down and got eye-to-eye with her. You began singing “Jesus Loves Me” softly to her, and within seconds she had calmed down. Before you made it to the cashier, you both were singing and she was smiling.” Nancy smiled and said, “I’ll always remember that.”

I actually remember that day so very long ago. Please don’t give me credit for my reaction to my daughter’s ‘spell’, as my grandmother would have called it. I clearly recall that my first instinct was to become angry and impatient. But, a nudging from the Holy Spirit redirected me. Instead of giving into my natural reaction, I prayed for supernatural intervention. He supplied it. And because He came through for us-- with a song and a smile-- His name and my witness left the grocery store intact that day.

Do I keep my cool every time a cranky person crosses my path--when a rude driver cuts me off in traffic--when Life  doesn't 'sit and stay' when I tell it to? I would love to tell you 'yes.'

That would not be the truth.

But, when I do pay attention to that nudging in my spirit, and intentionally step back and let Him take over... the growls turn into grins.. the snarls into smiles... and sometimes, just sometimes, the wisecrack turns into a warble!

It's all about remembering that... it's all about Him... and the person who may be watching us lose control and 'have a spell.'  Even when you think no one is watching...someone may have you in their sights. What will they see?
"The Spirit
gives us
power, love
and self-control."
2 Timothy 1:7 (CEV) 

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