On Valentine’s Day the caregiver was with my husband and I was out running errands. I stopped at Olga’s for lunch. I stopped at the time when the lunch rush should be quieting down, but the restaurant was busier than usual. I had to wait for a table. I felt self- conscious asking for a table for one. I sat for a few minutes and was called to a table. It was in a corner and the next table over had a couple seated at it. I didn’t pay much attention to my surroundings, opened my Kindle to read a book I have been reading for a while, and ordered my usual menu from Olga’s. The waitress was very nice and kind. When I was finished eating, I waited for the bill. The waitress came over and told me there was no bill that someone had paid for my meal. I was shocked. She said it was the couple at the next table and that they had said to wish me a “Happy Valentine’s Day.” I tried to “pass it on” by giving money to the waitress and she refused, telling me “They wanted to do this for you.” I told the waitress why I was alone, and she became teary along with me.
Our world has become often brutal in our treatment of others. We need, myself included, to be kinder, more forgiving, and more accepting. This is not who Christ called us to be. Christ called us to be the ones who see an elderly woman dining alone on Valentine’s Day and pay for her meal and wish her a Happy Valentine’s Day. That is who I want to be. I don’t know what faith they are or even if they are religious, but they embodied more of what Christ taught than many others.
“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on a stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way let your light shine before all, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.“Matthew 5:14-16
Lord, we thank you for the people who show us kindness. For the thoughtful acts of others. For those who live their faith. May we be more like them. May we reach out to the stranger, to those alone, to those in need. Be with our Pastor and his family, bless them and bless his ministry. Be with our staff and leaders, guide them and watch over them. Be with our church that we may be the hands and feet of Jesus. Comfort those who grieve, those who are ill, those who face life changing events, strengthen them, may they feel your presence in their lives. In Jesus name, Amen