Coughdrops

A little while ago, I was in Illinois and Michigan for the week. I had been suffering for several weeks with allergies. It had grown worse and had actually turned into a sinus infection. I had been taking Claritin and some other over the counter medicines and it just wasn’t getting better.

I was speaking to a large group of people one day and was really having a hard time getting through the seminar. I was coughing, blowing my nose, and just plain looking foolish in front of all these people. The microphone didn’t help! There were a couple of times when the coughing got so bad that I had to stop the seminar for a minute or so.

I usually have two breaks during the afternoon. During the first afternoon break, I noticed that one of the ladies in attendance didn’t come back when the break was over. She did walk back in about 15 minutes later… No problem. Sometimes people have business that they must attend to.

At the next break she walked up to me with a roll of cough drops in her hand. She handed them to me and I asked her where she got them.

“During the last break I went up to the drugstore and got them for you. I could tell that you were having a hard time and I just wanted to help you.”

Wow! It blew me away. I looked at her – incredulously. “God bless you”, I said.

“He does every day,” she answered back.

“I can tell that about you,” I told her. “I may never get to know you here, but I’ll get to know you when we get to heaven.” She smiled.

I could tell that she was a little embarrassed by the big deal I was making out of it. She hadn’t bought the cough drops for me to tell her how great she was. She did it because that’s who she is. I gave her a little hug and then we were both back in seminar mode.

I put a cough drop in my mouth and within seconds felt the scratchiness melt away from my throat and felt my breathing get better.

You know, this is what it means to follow Christ in our lives. This lady saw a person in obvious discomfort and did something about it. That’s the difference between her and most people. It’s the “taking action” part that makes all the difference.

In the book of James, Jesus’ brother says: “What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” (NIV)

When we see someone in need, we are to do something. True obedience demonstrates that our faith is authentic.

That little act of kindness will stay with me and I hope it stays with you as a guide as to how we need to live our lives on a daily basis… Her thoughtfulness blessed me but also blessed God at the same time!

In a world that seems to be more about me, me, me–who can you serve today?

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