Thursday, March 22, 2012

God with us?

She had beautiful eyes, as blue as the sky on a perfectly clear winter day.  I bet her husband swooned over them many a time.  Her hair had just a trace of blond left among the yellow.  Her skin was incredibly dented, wrinkled, worn.  She was frustrated, feisty, tired out, 80-something years old.

She was looking for the free tax preparation, which this April happens is apparently housed on the 5th floor of the science building at the university where I teach.  After she interrupted the class across the hall, she found me in office hours and started looking for tax help.  Yesterday, during my one hour a week of solitude, it was not a very welcome interruption.

I happened to have a few quiet minutes with no students around.  Something in me clicked, and paused.  It was surreal.  Supernatural?  I listened, and noticed.  Her eyes, her skin, her labored breathing, her complaints about doctors and blood pressure medicine and coughs.  And I found myself wondering, what if this very woman was the Jesus I believe in?  Jesus on the Chemistry floor during my office hours.  Would I think her more beautiful, more important, worth taking time to listen to, talk to, and would I leave a chair out for her?  For a few minutes, she became a glimpse of my humble God, and  I stopped to make time for her.

What if I had that thought 5 minutes earlier?  Would that book salesman I just talked to seem more of a valuable person than a salesman to be annoyed with?

Driving across town on my way home then, walking around the elementary school, greeting moms and grandmas, scooping up my own dirty-faced little boys.  I glimpsed people in a way that I never have before.  Not with long hair, or strange clothes, or worn, or small, or beautiful, but each the tiniest facet in a crazy glimpse of an unfathomable God.  


Don said...

"in that you've done it to the least of these... you've done it to Me."

Good post. Made me think of this song:

I had never seen the video that went with it. Now I have.

Jan said...

This is beautiful, Joanna. :-) Made me think of another aspect of this in which a young student (20 years)came to our office for whatever he could/should have been doing for himself, as most do. I came up to the front to assist "another one" and as I looked at him, immediately the thought entered my mind: "What if this was your son? How would you want him to be treated?" Changed my attitude immediately. :-)

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