Monday, October 26, 2009

live simply so others can simply live...

Last Wednesday I sped down Washington Boulevard with a million things pulsing through my mind. Technically it was my lunch hour, but lunch wasn’t remotely on my to-do list. I jumped from store to store in a frantic 60-minute game of leapfrog. My final lily pad was Staples to pickup office supplies. On the phone, list in hand, I walked with the intention and focus of an archer, the electronic sliding door my target.

I didn’t even see her at first. Her question threw me off. Her skin was weathered and aged, her hair matted and frayed. It was over 95 degrees and she was dressed in a grey sweat suit and jacket. She was homeless and hot and asking for something to drink.

I’m not sure I even acknowledged her existence. I was distracted and annoyed that I had been pulled from my focus. I mumbled something of a half-truth as I walked into the store to pickup card stock and lanyards for our thanksgiving event, because you see, I’m busy and important and planning a big event to help people. Oh yes, that’s right, I want to serve the homeless! The working poor! The hungry!

And then it hit me. The woman standing outside the air-conditioned store was the exact person I was aiming to help. Yet I didn’t even know what she asked of me.

I walked outside, looked for the grey sweat suit and found the exhausted woman sitting in the shade. She saw me coming and asked me for something to drink, but she stopped mid-sentence upon recognizing it was the same woman who ignored her at the door. I sat down next to her and asked what she needed. All she wanted was water. And all I wanted was a slap in the face.

I make Life complicated. Yes, complicated. It doesn’t have to be intertwined with layers of deeds and plans and budgets. At the core of this is simplicity. As I heard this weekend while visiting a church, live simply so that others can simply live. In one act of kindness, I was able to love this woman like Jesus would have. By serving man, I was able to serve God and live out Matthew 9:41, For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because of your name as followers of Christ, truly I say to you, he will not lose his reward.

Food for thought: What are simple ways you can help others simply live? When was the last time you took less so someone could have more? Live like Jesus. Give what you have. Love out loud.


Becky said...

I have been that person so focused on the task at hand that I miss the person who is in need or hurting right in front of me! I actually saw your "tweet" yesterday about living simply and decided to write a short post on my blog! One simple way I can live is to look at others around me that are hurting or hungry and take time to just be with them. Even if I don't have money, I do have time!

Anonymous said...

Great post! Very powerful & convicting! Thanks for the reminder!


Anonymous said...

Great post, hit home so bad, sometimes we even do that with our own family, things to do take its toll on us.. Thanks Bianca

Warrior in Training said...

Christianity is a call to action, isn't it? Thanks for the reminder.

Daniel said...

Great blog B. Life get's so busy with so many things sometimes that we get lost in ourselves. About 6 yrs ago I still thought the world revolved around ME! The Lord has been working overtime in that area of my heart in the last 3 yrs I would say. My office is on Sunset on the Wessssside of Hollywood where during my walk to get some grub I usually see some folks in need. I prefer to get them some food and a drink just to get them through their day and in the process I try to share Jesus. And several times I have been the one to walk by, acting as if they were just part of the sidewalk. Yet when you stop take those few min to interact with them it puts many things into perspective - How We must be Willing to Serve just as Christ came as one who Served - as the one who washed the disciples feet - serving their needs. I mean cmon, you know those cats had some cracked, dirty sweaty tired feet - but our Lord sat at too the time yo gently wash them.
I, also need to take the time when the opportunity presents itself even if it's just taking the time to listen to someone and offering a shoulder. It's a tough thing to do at times but we have a Saviour who gave us the greatest example and Him who we can call upon to work in those calloused areas of our heart.

Good look on hitting that area of my heart! Thanks

Celia Jimenez said...

Wow! Great post...I stumbled across your blog from Bridget's blog. Loved it!!! Also loved the post about Halloween. Thanks for being so real and transparent!!!

Diandra Ann said...

Awesome. Isn't it great when we get a 2nd chance??? Love that. Love YOU!!!

christy said...

ok, i know i posted something earlier, but don't see it now, so sorry if there ends up being a duplicate:)

I loved your post today! It's so easy to become self absorbed and concerned with what's going on in our own lives, while being blinded to the needs of others. Whether its a friend who needs a listeneing ear or a homeless person who needs food, all the issues in our own lives consume us and block the ability to see those who need us. Thanks for reminding us that we need to love and serve in the name of Christ...

btw...thanks for the pic! I loved it and was so excited to get it:)u and lisa look great!

Bianca said...

Yes, friends, it's totally a call to action. Unfortunately, I was momentarily deaf.

Celia, welcome to the blog!
Becky, I'm gonna check out your post now.
D, travel well and keep blogging while you're out.
WIT, love the term: call to action. So true.
Daniel, what a good story! Love what you're doing.
J, squeeze gorda for me!!!
Christy, it was SO nice to meet blog readers. I was so blessed!!!


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