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Unsung April 6, 2017

As I was walking in my neighborhood the other day, it occurred to me that I was operating as an unsafe pedestrian. I was so lost in my thoughts and wonderings, reality as it was, escaped my notice.

 

This pre-occupied state began when I noticed a flower growing up through a crack in the sidewalk. Not an entirely improbable sight, but it got me to thinking. Here is this little plant, volunteering itself up through a small opening, far from the field of its fellow flowers gathered in a patch nearby. The patch of flowers was easy to notice, yet one could easily miss the lone bud in the concrete.

 

As I continued on, my eye was drawn to a young woman struggling down the street with two small children in tow. Mama with a boisterous toddler in a spindly stroller and a wee baby in a backpack, pushed this tiny caravan slowly along in the light rain. I guessed their destination was the bus stop up the hill. I was reminded of the struggles of young parenthood and the many deficits one met and overcame in the day to day challenge of child rearing.

 

Travelling on to the neighborhood grocery, I waved to my favorite bag handler, Jonathan. We have never had a conversation beyond mild pleasantries but Jonathan and I have smiled and nodded through the years he has served me. It’s not likely Jonathan will ever aspire to better employment, but he cheerfully puts all his efforts into packing and schlepping the groceries for busy and distracted customers, day in and day out.

 

The smell of coffee from the corner shop drew me in for a latte. As I was resting my sore feet and rejuvenating my rain dampened spirit, I looked around at all the comings and goings on the street.

 

Across the parking lot, an elderly man, stooped and frail, was helping his little wife to their car. During their labored journey, aided by an aluminum walker which seemed needed by both, they paused and laughed. It was not possible for me to know what had elicited this jovial moment during the tedious progress toward their goal, but it lightened my mood.

 

With renewed vision, I began to pray. I prayed for the solitary, the challenged, the ones who may never get much further along, and those who might keep slipping backward. I prayed for the weary, who walk on and show up and keep trying, no matter who sees.

 

This world is arranged for winners. The lights are directed to the winner’s circle and the finish line. Boy, do we love a success story. Rags to riches, overnight success. Pleasing the crowd and making each moment count. What happens in the shadows of the limelight? The stories that cannot be tied up in a bow are ones we wish to manipulate into “feel goods” or “there but for the grace of God” happy endings so we can sleep at night. It’s a human response. We are not really meant to bear the weight of this world.

 

That day the Lord and I had a conversation about what He sees. It was a humbling exchange. Blessed are the poor in spirit…. they will inherit God’s kingdom- the kingdom of upside down. All is not as it seems from our vantage point on earth. We will understand by and by.

 

The underscore of our conversation led me back to the good book. The words in red give many clues to help me understand the content of my day.

 

God sees. He saves tears. He counts hairs. He notices tiny birds. He sees us in our dreary struggles against all odds in this fallen world.

 

Our pain, our lack, our loneliness, will be remembered and redeemed.

“His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.” Matthew 25:23

About the Author: 

Submitted by Sunny Vigos. Sunny is passionate for all things animals (among many other passions). She is the director of Counseling at GSM Beaverton and her husband, Randy, serves on the International Board of Directors.

Bethany Stroup

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