I have always been drawn to old people. My mom used to say that I didn’t bring home stray dogs, I brought home stray old ladies. It was true. I was always befriending sweet elders on the street, in the park or at the grocery store. Periodically, I brought one home with me. And, my encounters and offers to help usually got complicated.
It is not surprising then, that recently my husband offered a ride to an elderly lady walking down our street. Richard noticed she was pulling a suitcase and carrying a big bag–so he surmised she was headed to the bus stop. Pondering the question, “What would Leona do?” he pulled over and asked if she would like a ride. He took her bags and put them in the back, noting they were pretty heavy for such a frail little lady to be carrying.
At the bus stop, he retrieved her bags and handed them to her. She looked desperately at him and then asked, “Do you know where the trash can is?” “No,” he answered, but was curious why she needed a receptacle at that point in time. She responded, “Well, that bag is full of doggie “doo-doo” (not the precise word she used) that I picked up all along the road, and I need to get rid of it.” Needless to say, Richard suddenly felt a little queasy.
I laughed when he recounted what it meant to follow through with what he thought I would do. And yes, he was right. I probably would have given her a ride as well. And, I also, would have learned too late that I had transported a burdened down little lady with some significantly foul baggage.
Of course, I am reminded of the arguably overused question, “What would Jesus do?” I believe he does this every day. He picks us up, smelly baggage and all, and carries us to our destination. Centuries ago, he did more than that. He sacrificed his life in order to turn our smelly sin into a fresh aroma and give us a completely clean beginning.
Sometimes, we just need help trashing the baggage.
written by Leona Bergstrom, Director, Re-Ignite
© Re-Ignite 2019
Images © CanStock