Sometimes practicing kindness is hard work.
I’m not proud of me right now.
Not 30 minutes out of a fabulous, challenging, life-giving church service, I found myself in Walmart wanting to be mean.
There, I said it. Put me in the corner. I deserve a time out.
Yep. The cashier checked me out without looking at me, greeting me, or even acting like I was standing in front of her. My husband witnessed it all, so I know I am not crazy.
Usually, I can win even the hardest heart over (or at least I think I can), but this cashier, donning a bright pink breast cancer awareness t shirt, didn’t budge. Wasn’t giving me an inch. Didn’t even answer mine or my husband’s questions or acknowledge that we were customers.
I bit my tongue, not even sure why or how I mustered any self control, and left the store.
While growling, grimacing, and grunting (all on the inside, of course), I said, “Ugh. That is my pet peeve. Is it that hard to be kind?”
“Let it go, Janell, it’s not worth the energy,” my husband said. “Just let it go.”
Most of the time, when I find myself in front of someone like my Walmart cashier, I would have asked her how she was doing, but for some odd reason I didn’t. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt, because most of the time people are just having a bad day. Lord knows, I’ve had countless bad days.
But, in all honesty, she just seemed—unkind. Like she truly didn’t care.
I think that is what really got to me.
Really hurt my heart, well—frustrated my heart.
I couldn’t seem to let it go.
Until right now.
Today’s sermon was all about knowing our why. Why are we here on planet Earth? We were encouraged to really think about this all-important, purpose-filled question.
Suddenly, my purpose and passion personified into a Walmart cashier wearing a bright pink breast cancer awareness t shirt.
Life is way too short to be miserable.
To sell yourself short.
Jesus told this simple story, but they had no idea what he was talking about. So he tried again. ‘I’ll be explicit, then. I am the Gate for the sheep. All those others are up to no good—sheep stealers, every one of them. But the sheep didn’t listen to them. I am the Gate. Anyone who goes through me will be cared for—will freely go in and out, and find pasture. A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.'”
Today, I’m writing my Why Manifesto:
- Share the profound love of God. Live a life filled with helping others—YOU—embrace and live the remarkable, God-sized life that Jesus died to give you.
- Shape tools that shake, sharpen and make you smile. Write, speak, and create practical, inspiring, faith-filled books/eCourses/seminars/conferences that guide others—YOU—towards realizing your remarkable, God-sized life—your legacy, your lineage, depends on it.
- Show up and Shine His light. Make God’s why for my life help me love, listen, and lead every single person placed in my care because He has directed our paths to intersect. If I am consistently meeting with my heavenly Father, His path will be my path (John 17).
Download your Why Manifesto
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The Practice of Kindness VLOG, teaching video