Tonight I took my 7yr old, Kailyn, to tumbling class. Things are always so crazy on Wednesday nights b/c the kids don't usually get off the bus until 4:30 and we have to make the 40+ min drive to tumbling class in a nearby town by 5:30. So we are always rushed to make it to class on time. In the past three weeks that she's gone to class, we've made it there at exactly 5:30 3 times. Needless to say, Wednesday evenings are a bit stressful. While K tumbles, I sit in the waiting room with other waiting moms and grandmas, and it's...well...a bit awkward. I feel like the odd woman out each week. No one seems friendly or willing to make me their new acquaintance. Today I had my first conversation with a mom that consisted of my asking a question and her answering. Nothing more. As I sat there, trying to read my book but in reality couldn't focus because of the other conversations and noise going on, I couldn't help but wonder something. How do others see me? Do those moms look at me and think I must not be friendly and therefore do not try to start up a conversation with me? Do I allow Christ's love to shine through me as I sit in the waiting room each week? Probably not. If we are true Christ followers, we much allow Christ to shine through us at all times. It seems next to impossible at times, but I think it's a learned trait. The more we focus on Christ, the more we are aware of Him in our daily lives, and the more He affects each of our words, actions, and thoughts.
Here is another example of how I failed today. After the class, I went to Walmart to pick up a few groceries and, as I was leaving the parking lot and waiting to turn out onto the road. At this particular moment, K decides she's hungry NOW and wants to go to Subway NOW and proceeds to throw a 7 yr old sized tantrum over a $5 Footlong. I had tried to reason with her, but to no avail. So I raised my voice and let her know that her tantrum was unacceptable, we were going home, and then she could eat a taco for dinner. I turned around to look through the front window again and caught a glimpse of a man pulling into the Walmart entrance beside where I was. Our eyes locked and as they did I noticed he was smiling. A nice, cheerful smile. Then I realized that my face was still locked in its I'm-really-frustrated-with-the-way-my-kid-just-acted look...that is anything but cheerful. They he drove on past me before I had the chance to smile back. That got me thinking. I felt guilty about not smiling back. And embarrassed that I must have looked like a complete and total grump to him. Honestly, his authentic smile made me WANT to smile despite my current circumstance with K. One little smile. What if he was a Christian and trying to let Christ's love shine through him by smiling at me? As someone on the receiving end, it was wonderful to see that smile! And I'm already a Christian, even though I probably didn't appear to be very full of Christ's love at that moment. How powerful that smile could be to someone hurting, someone mourning the loss of a loved one, something who is about to lose their house, or someone who doesn't have a house at all? The world is full of hurt, disappointment, betrayal, and deceit...and the world needs us. YOU. ME. We hold within us through the power of the Holy Spirit the opportunity to change the world one person at a time. Through something as simple as a kind word, a thoughtful gesture...or even a smile. So keep smiling ladies...you may just make some stressed out mom's day! lol :)