Help When You Least Expect It

    Our lives are observed by others even when we aren't thinking about it. We could be in the grocery store store with a long list, mumbling to ourselves over and over under our breath. Or we could be playing at the park or fishing in the river. We could even be in the theater and excited to watch the latest movie. Absorbed in activities like these,  we are seen by others and God.

    My mom and I heard the other day that Walmart had received its first shipment of flowers and decided to check them out. I picked up some cute little yellow flowers just as my mom asked me to get a cart to hold our finds. So, I went to the front and grabbed a cart - but in my rush I didn't pay attention to where I set my flowers. They tumbled to the floor and spilled potting soil everywhere. I hurried to clean it up, feeling like an idiot.

    One of the women who works there rushed over.

    "I've got it. You go ahead," she said. "You've cleaned up enough. Don't worry."

    I'd already stuffed what soil I could back into the pots and set my flowers in a safer place in the cart. To leave the mess behind felt strange. Even stranger, though, was when I heard her say she had seen me pick up and put away items that were out of place.

    My mom taught me that even if it's not my mess, I should help clean it up. But for my crazy cleaning to result in someone else attending to my mess, I wasn't sure what to think.

    I told the lady, "Thank you," and scurried to catch up with my mom.

    God, like the lady at Walmart, steps in when we least expect it and helps us. He sees everything we do. We may not want to think about it, but it's true. So, when we drop food off at the food bank or fail to pick up the trash at our feet, God knows. How we react in each situation is our choice.

    God is always with us. When we are failing and need help, He sends people. Sometimes those people are ones we expect, like a caring neighbor or family member, and sometimes they are ones we don't expect, like the lady at Walmart. What we do does matter in the eyes of God and others. Even if we don't think it is so. And that includes the moments we think no one is around, because God sees those too.

    "Can a man hide himself away in secret places so that I cannot see him? says the LORD. Do I not fill heaven and earth?" Jeremiah 23: 24 (Ignatius Revised Standard Edition: Catholic Edition)


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