Love Them, No Matter What!

“Let us move on to the neighboring villages
so that I may proclaim the good news of God’s love there also.”

Mark 1:38

While sorting through receipts, I happily discarded the ones which represented good Christmas gift choices. I was especially pleased that our growing granddaughters were pleased with Grandpa’s and my selections for them. As I continued, I recalled the unhappy little boy I’d encountered during one of those successful shopping trips.

The little guy had reached his shopping limit. I realized that his mother’s promise to head to the checkout in five minutes made no impression when he announced, “I hate you!” This mom couldn’t reply because she would have produced more than the single tear which trailed down her cheek. She simply pushed her cart with her son in tow toward the front of the store.

Though I still had things to purchase, I couldn’t let this poor woman leave without helping her. I took my own cart to the checkout line and waited behind her. I made a bit of small talk and then shared that my own son had spoken the same words to me more than three decades earlier. I admitted that I’d responded with tears as well. Fortunately, my wonderful neighbor helped me to deal with the situation. When I asked if her kids had ever said that, my neighbor responded, “Sure they did. They’re kids. And you know what I did? I pulled them close and said, ‘Well, that’s okay because I still love you!’”

I shared that I repeated my neighbor’s words to my own son and that this was the last time my son ever spoke those words to me. After thanking me for this bit of wisdom, the young mom kissed her little boy on the top of his head and headed back to pick up that last item she needed. As for me, I finished my shopping, too.

Loving God, your loving ways make good sense. Thank you for giving us the sense to share them.

©2019 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

Share Your Good News

“Let us move on to the neighboring villages
so that I may proclaim the good news there also.”

Mark 1:38

Though most people had made their Christmas returns days earlier, I waited. I’d purchased a little cash register for our grandson which would have been a duplicate gift. I didn’t have time to return it before Christmas and I’d forgotten to do so afterward. So there I was…

I enjoy people-watching perhaps more than shopping these days and that afternoon was no exception. While browsing, I observed a little boy and his mom. While his mother patiently urged him toward a checkout line, he skipped and wiggled and looked in every direction except hers. Finally, she patiently nudged him on once again. With that, the little boy announced, “You’re so mean!!” I couldn’t help noticing as that mom brushed a tear from her eye. She gently took her son’s hand and ushered him toward a check-out line.

Though I still hadn’t finished browsing before making my return, I couldn’t let this poor woman leave in her current state. I walked up to the checkout line where I waited behind her. I made a bit of small talk and then got to my point. I told her that my own sons had spoken similar words to me when they were her child’s age. I admitted that I responded with tears as well until I learned an important lesson from my wonderful neighbor. She’d taught me to respond with an “I love you” which apparently touched my kids. Both of my sons’ subsequent outbursts were few and far between. After thanking me for this bit of wisdom, the young mom smiled. As I walked away to take care of my return, I heard her telling that little guy, “I love you.”

Loving God, love is always the best response to our misdeeds. Thank you showing us the way.

©2018 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

Share The News

“Let us move on to the neighboring villages
so that I may proclaim the good news there also.”

Mark 1:38

While picking up the house, I found a gift receipt left from Christmas. Since that particular purchase was put to use immediately, I discarded the little white paper. I smiled as I reveled in having made a good choice for my granddaughter. As I continued the cleaning, images of that trip to the mall returned.

While perusing the toy department, I encountered a little boy who had reached his shopping limit. His mother’s promise to head to the checkout in five minutes made no impression. The little boy announced, “I hate you!” There was no room for anger in this poor mother’s heart. Rather, she brushed a tear from her eye as she pushed her cart with her son in tow toward the front of the store.

Though I still had things to purchase, I couldn’t let this poor woman leave in her current state. I took my own cart to the checkout line where I waited behind her. I made a bit of small talk and then got to my point. I told this young mom that my own son had spoken the same words to me three decades earlier. I admitted that I responded with tears as well and then added that my wonderful neighbor helped me to deal with the situation. When I asked my neighbor if her kids ever said that, she responded, “Sure they did. They’re kids. And you know what I did? I pulled them close and said, ‘Well, that’s okay because I still love you!’” I shared that I followed my neighbor’s advice and that this was the last time my son spoke those words to me. After thanking me for this bit of wisdom, the young mom headed back to pick up that last toy and I finished my shopping.

Loving God, your loving ways make good sense. Thank you for giving us the sense to share them.

©2016 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved