A close friend of mine recently sent this to me and with her permission, I am sharing it with you…
Love isn’t easy.
It’s not neat and tidy.
It requires the best of us when we would be more inclined to give less than our best.
Today was one of those days in which writing about loving others would have been much easier than actually being love in action.
As you know, Wednesdays are my writing days. I typically go to my special hide out and just write without distractions.
A couple of weeks ago, the elderly neighbour (who used to live beside me) told me that she was going to be in town for a doctors appointment on Wednesday and she wanted to meet for coffee. I of course said ok. Yesterday (Tuesday), I received a call that she had come to town a day early and wanted to know if I was available to meet for coffee that day. I had a bunch of things that I needed to do but figured I could set aside an hour or so to meet in the afternoon. While out, I wanted to surprise her with a treat from our favourite place. I decided to call her and ask if she’d like anything from there. She said yes. As she began telling me what she’d like, something inside of me harped up and said, “how about I come pick you up and we can go together.” And so we went. It was lovely.
During this time, I also noticed that she was breathless every so often and needed her puffer. I remember her telling me that she planned on taking the bus to her appointment the next day and then waiting at the hospital for her daughter to pick her up. After inquiring if she would be seeing any of her other friends while she was in town, I learned that she wasn’t going to see anyone. And so, the voice from within harped up again. I told her that I would come pick her up in the morning, drop her off at her appointment, pick her up after her appointment and that she could rest at my place until her daughter came to pick her up.
This morning, as I went about doing my things, the conniving voice of the devil whispered in my ear “Why are YOU doing this? You have other things to do. Your day is not going to be like you envisioned. There goes YOUR day.”
Why was I doing all of this? Why did I harp up not once but twice? As I arrived to pick my old neighbour up, I was greeted by her son-in-law who she was staying with (I was surprised that anyone was home). I learned that he was working from home that day.
I could feel frustration creeping in. Why was I the one driving her to her appointment when her son-in-law was working from home? Couldn’t he have driven her?
And to make matters worse, I could feel the devil egging me on with every passing moment.
And then it happened. The thoughts…the rather ugly thoughts that were swirling in my head were interrupted by another voice I know all too well. In a gentle yet firm tone, the voice said, “You are driving this lady because I asked you to.” God asked me not her son-in-law. He asked ME. And in that moment the bitterness that was forming in my heart was replaced with something more powerful…gratitude. Taking my elderly neighbour to her appointment was not an obligation, it was a privilege.
I became frustrated because I felt obligated. I became frustrated because I was so attached to my own agenda that I couldn’t see that perhaps God had something more important in store. I became frustrated because I made it all about me. My attitude almost robbed me of this gift.
Here I was writing about servant leadership and there I was almost missing out on doing and being the very thing I so firmly believe in. Talk is cheap. It’s who we are when our “all about me” moments get interrupted that truly show what we believe in.
As you often say, “Life is not about you and it’s all about you.”
Loving others is not always easy nor is it necessarily convenient but it is always the right thing to do.