From time to time, I read a really good story and just have to pass it along. I noticed this one in Max Lucado’s book, A Gentle Thunder.
“Once there was a man whose life was one of misery. The days were cloudy and the nights were long. Henry didn’t want to be unhappy, but he was. With the passing of the years, his life had changed. His children were grown. The neighborhood was different. The city seemed harsher.
He was unhappy. He decided to ask his minister what waswrong. ‘Am I unhappy for some sin I have committed?’ ‘Yes,’ the wise pastor replied, ‘You have sinned.’ ‘And what might that sin be?’
‘Ignorance,’ came the reply. ‘The sin of ignorance. One of your neighbors is the Messiah in disguise, and you have not seen Him.’ The old man left the office stunned. ‘The Messiah is one of my neighbors?’ He began to think who it might be.
Tom the butcher? No he is too lazy. Mary, my cousin down the street? No, too much pride. Aaron, the paperboy? No, too indulgent. The man was confounded. Every person he knew had defects. But one was the Messiah. He began to look for Him.
He began to notice things he hadn’t seen. The grocer often carried sacks to the cars of older ladies. Maybe he is the Messiah. The officer at the corner always had a smile for the kids. Could it be? And the young couple who had moved next door. How kind they are to their cat. Maybe one of them…
With time he saw things in people he had never seen. And with time his outlook began to change. The bounce returned to his step. His eyes took on a friendly sparkle. When others spoke, he listened. After all, he might be listening to the Messiah.
The change of attitude was so significant that someone asked him why he was so happy. ‘I don’t know,’ he answered. ‘All I know is that things changed when I started looking for the Messiah.'”
Now I know who the Messiah is and I realize that He will Himself indeed return one day. But in the meantime, this story has merit. As we finish off year 2012, it is a great time to go looking for the Lord in our own worlds. I am certain that as we look for the sweet and kind in people all around us, our attitudes will change too!
Happy hunting! Happy New Year!
By His Grace and for His Glory,
Sherry L. Worel