Strangers Disguised As Blessings


“People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.”

This quote is something that I have always been a firm believer in…that people are placed in our lives for a specific reason. It could be anybody…a stranger you pass in the store as you nearly miss slamming your respective shopping carts into one another that can result in either a confrontation of anger or a small conversation of mutual apologies, smiles & wishing one another a great day. There’s 2 distinct messages here in this reblog: what you do with the experience of the people sent into your life & how you view or react to the experience, the person, itself.

I love people. I love using my height to always help an elderly person trying to reach a product from the top shelf..the gratitude, the relief, the feeling you get knowing that such a small gesture actually had a positive impact on that persons’ day is such a feeling of warmth, of love. You walk away feeling good about yourself, your mind has stopped racing at the pace of your grocery cart to get the dreaded task done as quickly as possible, while thinking ahead to all of the rest of the minutaie awaiting your to-do list for the day. It forces you to slow down, take off your blinders of living in your own world and engage in this thing we call humanity…what many take for granted when just as many would kill to have the ability to even grocery shop themselves, let alone drive to get there and all the steps required in completing this necessary task. We must eat, yes? I feel like I live at my local grocery store, but even if I’m pressed for time, I always do the following while I’m there…

I park my car by the nearest cart return, so it’s easy for me to always place my cart where it belongs, not shoving it into the nearest empty spot (or most likely, the car parked next to yours). On my way into the store and on my way out, I scan the parking lot for customers, especially the handicapped or elderly, that look like they could use some assistance putting their groceries in their car or needing their empty cart returned. It doesn’t take more than a few minutes to do this, and see, the simple fact that you stopped & asked if help was needed is usually accepted with gratitude. I say usually because I’ve had instances where my offer was turned down in anger, but that is what that person is feeling, not I, and it doesn’t stop me from offering the next time. That person is having a bad day, but at some point, they will remember the stranger that stopped to help them..it’s a ripple effect, like skipping a stone across a pond.

I can be just as frantic, just as stressed, just as hurried & focused at the grocery store as the next person, but I force myself to breathe, slow down & trust that no matter what delays occur due to helping someone, I’ll still get home in time to greet my son at the door every day after school, my top priority. I know this will happen because I have faith & confidence that it will happen, and I proceed accordingly.

I always seem to pick the check-out register that’s moving the slowest. A year ago, that would tick me off so bad that I would be the customer everyone else waiting gets angry at..big loud sighs, stamping my foot impatiently, getting increasingly annoyed as each minute dragged by incessantly. What did that do? It wasted my time, my energy and it put me in a bad mood. Why bother doing that to yourself for something that is beyond your control? The question I always ask myself is this:  in 5 years, 10 years, does this specific moment really matter in my life? The majority of the time the answer is a quick, resounding NOOO!! The rare occasions, such as pondering a major life-changing decision, if the answer is YES, I immediately draw back to think it through. I use my mind to weigh the pros & cons, but the final decision, always, comes from my heart. Some of these decisions, like ending my marriage, took years to not only implement but to accept as the inevitable. Yet once that particular decision was made, I knew immediately it was the right decision for me, because I felt relief, a weight lifted off my shoulders. I’ll address that topic another time and many others in the future, I’m sure.

I have met so many amazing people over the course of my life, moreso since I made a decision to not live by emotion, where every action causes a reaction. This decision has been a great blessing to me, has allowed people into my life on diffferent levels for whatever reason they were placed in my path. Technology of course is a great tool, if used with the proper intent, to meet great people, such as Facebook. I have a solid, personal relationship with almost every person on my Friends List, many whom I’ve never physically met due to geographic location, but due to common interests we forged a bond on a personal level. I’ve had the joy of re-connecting with childhood friends I haven’t seen in 30 years, friends from high school, my extended family that’s spread across the globe.. establishing friendships from mutual friends. I’m not searching for quantity, I’m searching for quality and I am truly surrounded by a group of loving, generous, supportive people.

I’ve had people come & go in my life, and I am certain this will continue, because it is meant to be that way for all of us. Think of all the opportunities you may have missed over the years because you instantly judged someone you don’t even know, dismissed them immediately, slammed the door shut & locked out any chance of that person coming into your life to fulfill their purpose! You’ll never know what you missed by reacting out of your conditioned emotions & personality.

Take a chance, open your heart, open the door to those who appear in your life. They have appeared for a reason, just as you have appeared in their lives for possibly the same reason or any realm of possibility. You have no control over the length of time this person is to stay in your life and vice versa, but there is definitely a reason your paths have crossed. It’s all about love, really. Love others more than yourself..not at your expense, but as human beings. Choose to love. I guarantee it will continually change your life for the better!

Peace, ~Jennifer~

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