Last week I was in Rapid City in the Walmart parking lot on LaCrosse Street. Now let me tell you what I look like when I do this. I push Hawk in his chair with my right hand and then with my left I pull the cart. I've been doing this for years so it's easy for me. That day I also had Peter sitting in the main part of the cart with his walker folded up and a big bag of dogfood underneath it. We were like a train going through the parking lot. It probably looked overwhelming to others, but as I said I'm used to it. I have a system and it works.
Well, we get to the suburban. I help Pete out of the cart and he gets in the suburban. So Hawk, the cart and I are behind the suburban. One very nice lady, all tattooed up and much younger than me, approached me and asked if I needed help. Though I probably looked like I needed help, I didn't. I told her thank you (and I very much meant it). Her noticing me really touched my heart. Then a car almost backed into me and the cart, and several people stopped to make sure we were okay (I don't think the driver even knew he/she almost hit us). And again, I was fine and was touched by the concern shown me and my sons.
Most of the time when we go out no one notices us and that's okay. Everyone is busy including us. But sometimes (and only adults do this -- kids never do this) people will look at Hawken in his wheelchair and then quickly look away because they're embarrassed. We aren't embarrassed. It isn't a surprise to us that Hawk has a wheelchair. Since this happens fairly often it isn't a big deal to us. I just am kind of sad for the people who do this because they miss out on a blessing. Hawk has the most beautiful eyes and he is just beautiful and peaceful and anyone who takes the time to look at him sees this.
I share this with you because I think we all need to get better at noticing people. There are so many people walking around who are sad or miserable who would be encouraged if you just look them in the eyes and give them a big-toothed smile. Yes, I said a big-toothed smile. Those take a bit of courage when looking at a stranger but when you take that chance very often they will smile back like that and boy, everyone's day is a bit better. And as one who does give those smiles not once has a big smile been rejected. It makes everyone feel better (I do not have a smartphone but I am not against them at all, but there would be more community between us all if people put those smartphones in their pockets or purses. I wonder if everyone who has one could limit using them when they are alone?).
The other day I met Mervan. I think he sleeps many days outside on a step. I don't know his story but I know he is loved by Jesus. Everyone needs a smile. And a smile doesn't cost you anything.
Jesus loves absolutely everyone. He came so all could be saved. Your smile might bring someone to Jesus.
"The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen." 1 Corinthians 15:23-24