A couple months ago I was having “one of those days” where I just wanted to grab some things after work and get home. I stopped at Wal-Mart and as I walked in I looked to the Greeter and smiled. She was about 16 years old and sitting on the floor against the wall, hugging her knees. She smiled. I busied myself getting my things so I could get out quickly from the box-store madness.
As I approached the exit, I passed the Greeter Girl, now standing up and leaning against the wall, arms crossed.
I thought “She should stand somewhere else where people can see her better!”
Immediately I felt God’s voice in my heart say, “Tell her she’s doing a good job.”
To which I quickly rebutted, “But she’s not!”
God, “Go tell her she has a nice smile then.”
I walked out with bags in hand; fighting that inner voice that I undoubtedly knew was God. I got in my car, and started to drive around the parking lot. Yes, around the parking lot. I finally put my VW in park and said, “God, do I HAVE to?” You know, that kind of question that a child asks a parent when they really don’t want to do what the parent is asking them to do, for their own good.
And again, immediately, I felt God say in my heart, “If it meant you’d get the freedom you’re looking and praying for you’d do it in a heartbeat.” That’s when I knew beyond a doubt I had to get back in that store and encourage that girl. I was being very selfish. God was giving me an opportunity to change exactly what I’ve wanted to see grow in my life – to LOOK for opportunities to be a blessing to those in my life. Even if they’re a stranger.
So, I got out of my car, and marched back in, with a mission. I approached the young girl and said, “Hi how are you? This may seem crazy but on my way out I felt like I was to tell you that you’re doing a great job. You have a nice smile. And God loves you.” Her eyes got moist, she thanked me, we smiled, and I walked away.
I got back to my car and felt relieved. It wasn’t eloquent or perfect. But, who knows what that young girl was going through that day. Could those few words have stopped her from committing suicide because someone noticed her, even when she was trying to be invisible? Or perhaps she decided NOT to have sex with her boyfriend because she felt some self-worth. Who knows? This side of heaven, I will likely never know.
All I know is that taking the time to notice someone else instead of just living a busy life had way more reward than you can predict.
It’s Monday. Take some time to notice someone and change their day! 😉