This morning I wanted to try something different. Instead of thinking too far ahead in my future, and about what didn’t happen yesterday, I asked Father God for one request: “Make today the best single day of my life, in Jesus’ name.”
So I went about my business, praising the Lord as I got myself ready to run errands with my dad. I’m not going to lie to you when I say that too many times before I’ve taken for granted my dad’s company; but I am so blessed to have my dad around especially when so many people at his age are unhealthy. He’s a vigorous and seasoned man of sixty two years, who can keep up with and even surpass people half his age. I thank God for my dad’s endurance and strength as we ran around all over town to get stuff done in preparation for our return trip to Costa Rica that’s in less than two weeks.
Where I used to take for granted the long winded conversations of my chatty father, today I chose to listen with intent. I learned something new about him as we bonded in the presence of God at the laundromat, in Subway, in the car on our way to the bank, the post office, the grocery store and back home. That time was precious because we laughed, and we even cried as he shared a new portion of his testimony with me that I didn’t already know.
There was another part of my day that really left an impression on my heart. When we were coming out of the dollar store, we saw an African American woman sitting on one of the pillars that held up the roof to the plaza’s breezeway. The woman seemed as if she lived on the streets; her clothes were dirty and torn, and her face looked sad and preoccupied. When my dad and I exited the store and we saw her there, I gave her the biggest smile that bubbled up from the abundance of my heart. To my pleasant surprise, this woman smiled back! Her eyes brightened up, and as if automatically, the corners of her mouth raised to the apples of her cheeks! Like the parting of an elegant grand curtain that revealed the most beautiful, genuine smile that I’d ever seen. It didn’t matter that she had a few teeth missing, that her face was dirty, or that she didn’t have anything to offer me. It was that smile I received in return, that ignited hope and love within me.
Now that I’m back home, sitting on the comfort of my bed, under the roof that God provides for our family, I remember the prayer to my Heavenly Father this morning. I think about the tears that my dad and I shed together after we parted from the woman, and to think that I’d probably never see her again… It was a moment where God filled us both with the joy of His desires, as He reminded my dad from where Jesus delivered him. He too was on the streets at one time; a slave to sin, drugs and poverty. My heart was filled all the more with compassion for the poor and with the desire to step outside of my comfort zone, to give and share the love of Jesus with the people who can’t give me anything in return.
I thank God for this day, for the blessings of His grace and the mercies of His love. It’s beautiful how He took His time to show us that love is as simple as a smile, and as generous as the blood of Jesus that was liberally poured out for all at the cross. And who knows how God can turn around that woman’s life, just like he did for my daddy’s! Anything is possible with God! So I pray that wherever the road of life may take her, that at least for tonight she may have a hot meal, and a safe place to sleep.
With all that being said, I had such a wonderful day. Thank you Jesus for the best single day of my life!