15 October, 2015

Try A Little Kindness

I went to grab a bite to eat tonight since my wife was not going to be home, and stopped in a small restaurant near my house. I'm in there pretty regularly so I knew the young girl behind the counter was new. As I placed my order I could tell she was not familiar for what I was asking for and I explained it to her. She seemed embarrassed. I told her not to worry that she'd get the hang of it. As she was ringing up my order I noticed that she was over charging me because she did not know how to upscale a combo with fried mushrooms rather than fries. She started getting very flustered and I told her not to worry that we could fix it and it would be ok. The owner is a friend of mine and he asked me what had happened and I explained it to him. He was obviously a little upset and apologized. I told him it was no big deal and that she would learn, but the only way to learn was to try. He acknowledged that I was right and explained the process to her. When he finished fixing the cash register he said something slightly sharp to the young girl and I said to him in a joking type way, "Hey, I like her, and I'm your customer, so you'd better not be hard on her!" He said, "OK, Darrell likes you, so it's all good."  As he went back to the kitchen she whispered, "Thank you!"  

By this time some other customers had come in and gave her a pretty large carry out order. When she rang it up they started getting a little rude and questioning the price. She went through and rang it all in again and it came up to exact same price. The man said that he must of ordered more than he realized, but offered to apology to her for the way he spoke to her and treated her. Her face was flushed with embarrassment and she looked as though she was going to cry. I walked over to where she was and asked her, "So, when did you start here?"  She said that this was her second day. So I said, "Your second day and you're doing it all by yourself already... that's a lot of responsibility."  The other customer heard all this and he came over and apologized for being so rough on her. 

A few minutes later she brought my food out to me and she thanked me for being so patient and kind to her and for standing up for her. I told her that we all have rough days and that it was going to get better. She thanked me again and said that she was thinking of quitting because so many people had been so mean to her today but that she had decided to stick it out and get better at her job. I spoke with her for a few minutes and told her that she'd see me again as I lived just up the street. She smiled and said she would look forward to talking to me again.

I was thinking about all of this later on and my mind went over to the sermon I preached this past Sunday. The gist of the message was that we needed to learn to speak to our mountains in the authority of Jesus Christ, and I titled the message, "It's Time to Say Something."  I started realizing that it's not just about spiritual matters, it's also time that we stand up and say the right word in due season. I'm glad the Lord put me in that situation tonight to speak a few kind words of encouragement to someone who desperately needed them. I keep thinking about an old Glen Campbell song that said:

If you see your brother standing by the road
With a heavy load from the seeds he's sowed
And if you see your sister falling by the way
Just stop and say, you're going the wrong way
You got to try a little kindness
Yes show a little kindness
Just shine your light for everyone to see
And if you try a little kindness
Then you'll overlook the blindness
Of narrow-minded people on the narrow-minded streets
A little kindness can go a long way!

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