I may not always have a very long fuse when it comes to waiting for service in restaurants. I despise waiting in line or taking a pager in order to have a dinner date. Reservations would certainly solve that problem. Oh well, planning isn't high on my list some days either. Worse still is the day I walked into an eatery and stood waiting to be greeted and to be asked for my order. I waited --- and waited --- and waited. Another couple walked in behind me and the person behind the counter came bouncing out and asked the couple what they would like to order. Oops, think I just popped a blood vessel. I succinctly turned on my heel and left vowing to never return. Did I mention I am petulant at times?
Monday, I entered our post office and before the door closed behind me, the postal worker behind the counter said, "Good afternoon. How can I help you today?" His response to my presence was not a rare encounter. Craig is perhaps the most congenial and proactive person I have met. He seeks to strike up a conversation, serve the customer with precise help, and solve possible problems. He would be my poster child for employee of the month if I owned a business.
He gets it. He treats everyone with excellence and cares about how people feel when they turn to leave. I want to be, I strive to be, I really wished I was like Craig. I am not. This dissonance has caused me to introspect a bit and now I'm just returning from a conference where the main theme is "For Our Neighbor". I am wondering how well I serve others. Do I make people feel important or do I short shift folks?
For - to celebrate and focus on others
Our - Not just my neighbors but all, ours, collectively, plural possession.
Neighbor - everyone, without qualifying, without discrimination
Oh Lord, please break my hardened heart and pour your Holy Spirit into those places of brittle resistance. Place the love of Christ Jesus in my words and the works of my hands. Mend me for service in your kingdom to all people. May everyone I meet immediately become a "neighbor" to me and may warm growing relationships be the first thing I establish. In Christ I pray and stand. Amen.