At first - it was a bouquet of flowers ...
I am waiting in the checkout line for the second time to take advantage of a great deal on cheese. I have one squirming and nearing his time limit two year old in the cart plus two extremely energetic girls all around me.
I am frazzled and nearing my limit as well. There is a nice lady in front of me - she has on a pretty shade of blue with a cute gray coat. I notice that she has three bouquets of flowers in her cart plus a potted plant.
"She must be a lover of beauty!" I think to myself. Then, Emily spies the flowers and comments on their beauty - she is a lover of beauty herself.
The nice lady picks up the bouquets and I assume she is going to let Emily see them up close or smell them or something kind like that.
She selects one bouquet of flowers and hands them to Emily but looks at me, "I would like to treat you," she says.
Next, it was a bouquet of kindness ...
I said thank you in a louder than normal voice. Could she tell there were tears burning the back of my eyes? Did she know how hard it had been to bring my children to the store? Could she see them throwing our bananas on the floor, asking to go to the bathroom, running down the aisles, following someone who must've looked like me from the back but wasn't out of the store, etc...?
Then, it was a bouquet of encouragement ...
It brightened my outlook. Made me stand a little taller and feel a little better. Changed my attitude - why don't I think to do things like that for other people? I am so preoccupied with my trials and challenges that sometimes it is hard to see beyond my little world.
Now, it is a bouquet of thankfulness ...
It was a joy to tell David the whole story when we got home. It was a joy to trim the ends of the flowers, prepare some water and allow them to bring beauty to our home. To place them in our Giving Thanks jars ~ truly I am giving thanks for the giver and the gift.
Oh, to be more like her. It can be easy to do things for those I know - but I confess that I rarely reach out to those who are unknown to me.
Thank You, Lord, for the shopper in the gray coat in front of us in line. Thank You for the blessing of her giving heart. I want to have this kind of giving heart too - as You show me opportunity, let me respond. May You receive the ultimate bouquet ~ a bouquet of praise and glory!