Sunday Morning Coffee: Rambles

I’ve been thinking all week about what my topic for this post would be.  I haven’t come up with anything yet.  Several scriptures have come to mind, but I’ve already written about most of them either on this blog or on my writing blog.  Nothing has taken hold in my thinking. So I’m just going to let my fingers do my thinking, and we’ll see what happens.

I went to the Walmart today to pick up a prescription. The store was packed full.  People are doing back-to-school shopping, I guess.  That’s not a part of my life any more, and I can’t say that I miss it. As I rolled along in one of those little electric carts the store provides, I had to approach each intersection with caution.  People tend not to watch for  scooters in the aisles.  You really don’t think about them much until you need one. Gives you a whole new perspective.

A pretty little girl walked along beside me for a couple of minutes.  She smiled and said, “Hi!”  I said “Hi” back, and that was the end of our moment of meeting. But I watched her as she continued to follow her mom, and she greeted everyone she saw.  She didn’t seem to expect much in return. She just enjoyed the people.  And every single person she met and greeted walked away smiling.

Of course that little scenario started me thinking about how easy it was for a little girl with a genuine smile to make new friends. She was asking nothing in return.

And then I thought about a conversation I had recently with a client who grew up in New York City, where you made every effort NOT to make eye contact with people you didn’t know. Smiling and greeting strangers is just not safe, so she told me.

I don’t live in NYC.  I don’t I’d be in danger of a mugging if I just tried to smile at people when I roll past them.  So I decided to try it.

Just a smile, not even speaking. It was amazing to watch the reaction. Every single person smiled back. Some said hello, others said “How are you?”  No one was angry.  Some were startled, some were surprised, but they all made eye contact and responded positively.

I’m going to keep doing that.  It was fun, and I left the store feeling pretty good.  Just as I was parking my cart, that same little girl walked by. She hesitated, smiled, and said, “Do you have a sore foot?”

“No,” I responded.  “I have a sore back.”

“Oh.  Well, I hope it gets better. ‘Bye.”  And she skipped off to catch up with her mom.

Proverbs 25:11. “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.”

logofitlyspoken

 

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6 thoughts on “Sunday Morning Coffee: Rambles

  1. Amen! I love it! Isn’t it just awesome when children teach us what we ought to already know and practice! 🙂 BTW, I learned how to drive again in one of those carts after my accident. Let’s just say that the local Walmart found out that their aisles just weren’t handicap accessible… It became a game of seeing how many endcaps I could destroy.

  2. Ha…LOVE IT!
    OK, as I was scrolling through the feed on WordPress looking to see what might catch my attention I saw the 3 golden apples! I couldn’t see the scripture reference at that point. (I thought to myself. .. ‘I wonder if she will use that verse’?) I happen to really think that verse is beautiful. I remember stumbling upon it a year or so ago and I think it jumped off the pages at me as I hadn’t noticed the beautiful picture it painted before then. I will have to try to find it because I know I bogged something about it.

    BUT…I do have a comment concerning smiling at others from my own experiences.

    So, born and raised in a (once very small town, but now it is quite a lot bigger), but raised in a small town in Arkansas I grew up where people always said hi and smiled in Walmart or tge 7-11 or just driving down a 2 lane road people would hold up their hand and wave, or at least throw up a few fingers from the steering wheel to say Hey as they passed. Not because they knew you but because people were raised and raised their children to be friendly. BUT THEN….I married a man from the NORTH. LOL. He had been living here and he was a friendly guy. His mom and dad lived in the Detroit Michigan area. His dad was retired executive from the Ford Headquarters. His mom and dad were nice but they were a little more ‘upper class’ than my family. (Let me be clear, they may have thought about themselves like that but they were certainly no better. I only said it because I grew up shopping at Walmart and grew up where stores were certainly closed on Sundays. My ex-mother-in-law took me shopping in malls tgat first of all had stores I had never heard of and certainly would never buy from. I remember years ago she took me into a Saks store [ how sad…I think that is the name of it ] anyway I remember looking at this pretty red blouse on a hanger and then looked at the price tag and about went into hyperventilation mode! Over $100 R U KIDDING ME. ..lol) My point is they surly thought themselves to be better than my folks but they simply spent more money. My parents paid cash for everything but the house and always had one car paid for (dad drove it because it was the old car) and they MIGHT have a car payment. No credit card. My daddy always said if they can’t afford to buy it then they don’t need it. If they really wanted it then they saved up to pay for it again ‘with cash’. Like new furniture or something. Certainly no payment plan for them. Anyway, my husband and me and the kids moved to the suburbs of Detroit in the early 90’s…1990- 1992. It was surly different there. I don’t remember really noticing that it changed me until I would move back home to Arkansas. People in Michigan didn’t go out of the way to say hi to anyone. They didn’t look at you. If I needed help finding something in the store it was a struggle. (I think I must have thought they just didn’t want to talk to me because of me. They couldn’t seem to understand me when I would ask where something was. I would have to say it three or four times before they would get it. I suppose it was my sweet southern voice. ..they were always saying, “where are you from”?)

    When my husband and I separated and I moved back to Arkansas, I noticed I had taken some of the northern traits back home with me. I would walk into a station to pay for gas (not at the pumps back then). People were super friendly and I found myself they payout be a little irritated from it. Come on stop the chit chat and move the line along because I have places to be! It did not take long for me to notice that it was nice saying hi again and that the problem was now me because I had been living where you don’t talk to strangers. I did begin to get back to my old self. BUT, one thing I can say about the ways of the folks up north. I found that they may not be friendly with those they DON’T know, but they were more of TRUE friends to their so called friends. Think about it, in the south they say hey to everyone and call many a friend but it is all superficial, all for appearance. Even many of your so called friends don’t seem real. They might say what you want to hear. ..’sure, I would love to..ok, we will, I will call and we can do it ‘, but they had no intention of it. So, I found that the northern people were not friends to EVERYONE but were true friends to those they called friends. Make sense?

    Ok…one more case study. Now we are in CURRENT time. I work in a very large corporate office that you cannot know the people who work there. Way too many. I told you this small town was big now. Walking to the restroom or to one of many conference rooms for a meeting or to the cafeteria, you are always passing many people who have their faces buried in the phones or just won’t look at you. In the last year I began forcing people to respond. Especially first thing in the morning. I would walk past and say in a loud happy voice GOOD MORNING. ..HOW ARE YOU TODAY? Then I would as passing on by end with, I HOPE YOU HAVE A GREAT ONE! I found many people would go from blank faces to smiles and say…thanks and you do the same. Then, in email. My, email seems to be most of our communication at work. It is so easy to simply say…I need you to so this or that. Then in your signature it says thank you so often people don’t even tell you thank you after sending a one line tgat barks off cold orders without a true thank you after. I have noticed myself doing that with some people at a plant in another state where I am directing them on where I need them to send production to. I began to think wow, I did not even say good morning hope all is well first. I have been doing that now. So, every day I start with Good morning. ….then end with a thank you and let’s all have a FANTASTIC and FABULOUS FRIDAY! If Tuesday I say terrific. Thursday gets Thankful and Wednesday is wonderful. Monday is magnificent! You know people respond with…THANK YOU AND YOU TOO!

    Ok friend, I have went on for too long. Have a super Sunday with the Lord Jesus Christ!

    1. Ha! I love your story. I’ve lived in Minnesota, Oregon, and Pennsylvania–born in Colorado, but was only two when we moved to Minnesota. I was used to the relaxed courtesy, not taken to far, of the midwestern folks. Moving to PA was a bit of a culture shock, but we came to work for a church, and the church folks were overwhelmingly welcoming. Honestly? I think you have a lot to do with how people react to you. A smile almost always gets a smile back 🙂

  3. Fun and Games – No Harm Meant – RIGHT?
    Here is the one I wrote using that verse. It was June of 2016. I had to go and dig into my notebook where I had put that verse in a journal after it leaped off the page to me. I think I wrote another focusing more on it alone but this one was all about my mouth.
    Have a great day!

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