A Fresh Perspective
I was in Chicago recently, visiting friends and meeting new contacts. I took the train from the city about an hour north to a suburb where I met with two pastors at a church to talk about their leadership team. While I was on the train, I took a seat where no one was sitting beside me. I kind of arranged my bag and my book and my MP3 player so it would be difficult for anyone to sit in the seat beside me. After a couple of minutes, I glanced over at the 2 seats I was taking up and decided that wasn’t the best idea since I was pretty sure there would be more people getting on the train over the next hour, so I packed up and opened up the seat next to me.
Wouldn’t you know it, just as I did that, a scruffy old guy walked down the aisle and looked right at that open seat. I was thinking in my head “don’t sit here, don’t sit here,” but of course he did. He wasn’t exactly clean-looking and I noticed that he was mumbling to himself, and of course I drew some conclusions and judgments in my own mind about him.
I started wondering how long I was going to be sitting next to this guy, but I didn’t have a train schedule, so when the ticket guy walked by, I asked him if he had a schedule and he said he didn’t, so I let it go.
I noticed the guy next to me was mumbling even louder, so I turned closer to the window to avoid him. It became evident to me, however, that his mumbling was directed at me, and when I turned to see what he wanted, he was offering his train schedule to me. Wow. Gave me a whole new perspective on how I was treating this guy and he was just trying to help me.
I took his schedule and thanked him. Just then the ticket guy came up and gave me a schedule, too. I looked at the guy next to me and smiled and gave him back his schedule. He smiled at me and then got up and walked to the next car.
Coincidence? Maybe. A lesson for me? Definitely.
So you never know where the lessons will come – or where the validation for who you are will come. Just keep your eyes and ears open and you’ll begin to know what you’re supposed to do with what you notice.
As I become more awake to the signs around me, I notice that they come to me more and more all the time. And, fortunately for me, I get the hit of recognition more quickly all the time.
Like my trip on the train, this new awareness is quite a ride!
What are you noticing around you? I'd love to hear about your insights!!