Extra, Extra! Read All About It!

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I am sure you have heard the phrase “Its not all about you” more than once in your lifetime, right? Maybe it was directed to you, or to someone else. Maybe you were a child, or maybe it was just yesterday! However and whenever it was, it probably didn’t make you feel too good. Its kinda like someone pointing a finger right at you and telling you that you are being selfish, while reminding you that there are other people in this world.
Well guess what?
Its time we do something for those around us. Those with needs greater than you and I. I know I have talked about this before, but its becoming a such a focus in my life at this time that I cannot help but bring it up again.
When was the last time you felt down in the dumps and struggled to find a smile? Yesterday? Last week? Today? It sucks, doesn’t it? I know. But take a minute and think about how you felt in that moment and what you were doing … Go on, think about it. I will wait. 

Ok, finished? I don’t know what you were thinking or why you couldn’t smile, but I bet you still had a home to sit in and sulk, didn’t you? Perhaps a job you were frustrated you had to be at? Did you eat something? Did you eat too much of something? Did you go shopping to lift your mood? Did you drive your car there? I think its safe to say many of these are true. After all, you obviously have a phone or computer if you are reading this.
Now, what if you had nothing? What if you didn’t have a house, a job, even a crumb to eat or sip of water to drink? What if you didn’t have clean clothes – or any change of clothes for that matter? What if your shoes had holes and each time it rained, your feet got wet from walking on the wet ground? What if you didn’t have any toilet paper? What if, despite all of this (and then some) you still had a smile on your face?
That is what I encountered recently. I met someone (we will call him “M”) who had nothing but a small black backpack. He was standing under a pavilion in the park conversing with a woman who was resting with her two dogs on a nearby bench. As we approached him, you could see that he was getting a bit nervous. And, for good reason, I suppose, since he had no idea who we were or what we wanted. But, once he realized we meant no harm, he smiled. He laughed. He shook our hands. ‘M’ even made a little joke. Again, he had nothing but a backpack….and he was smiling. Makes you think, doesn’t it?
We get so wrapped up in our world, with everything we have to do and want to do and all of our wants and desires that we forget that just waking up in the morning is enough to give thanks for. We don’t “need” anything else. Sometimes it seems like it takes losing everything to gain everything. Here is a thought – what if everything we think we need in life is exactly what is clogging up our life and keeping us from finding pure, honest happiness; completeness. This reminds me of the verse:

For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.

Mark 8:35
“M” made a lasting impact in my life in mere minutes. He even has a little spot in my heart and doesn’t even know it. Maybe its time we all gave up what we refer to as “precious time” and go out to find the real “precious” time… As we were walking away from “M,” after giving us thanks and saying that we gave him an answer to his prayer, we heard him loudly say, “And thank YOU, God!” It was my reminder. Hearing this broken man shout out and give thanks for all that he had gave me chills. And made me smile. 

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