Sunday, November 06, 2005

I've Always Relied on the Kindness of Strangers...

Today was sort of a nice day.

Last Sunday, our pastor came up with an idea for the church. Everybody was supposed to pick one person, someone that you wouldn't normally think of very much, and get them a present. It's the sort of thing that's really a lot of fun for most people, and miserable for someone as antisocial as me. I thought a lot about who to get a present for and this one guy kept coming to mind.

I didn't know him at all. We'd only had one prior conversation and that was about how he thought I was somebody's sister, when in fact, I wasn't. I didn't even know his name much less enough personal information about him to be able to give him a decent gift. I thought if I gave him anything, he'd think I was a weirdo since we'd never even really spoken to one another. So, at the end of the day, I talked myself out of it. I didn't get him anything. In fact, by the time this morning came about, I'd forgotten all about it.

I never imagined anyone would get me anything. I am, after all, very antisocial. The only people I talk to at church are people who are related to Jasmin or people who have been good friends with Jasmin for years and years. These people are obligated to talk to me, if not outright like me, so they don't really fit in the "people you don't normally associate with at church" group.

I was very surprised when somebody did get me a present. Shocked, in fact, when it turned out to be the same somebody that I'd chickened out of giving a present. God really does work in mysterious ways.

After church we had a free dinner sort of thingy in the fellowship hall. I really didn't want to talk to the guy, since, as I said, I'm very antisocial. But in the end, I couldn't help it - blind curiousity, if nothing else, got to me. I went up and thanked him for the gift, and told him that it was funny that he got me something because I'd been thinking of him, too. He laughed and said that he'd spent four hours in the mall on Saturday trying to pick something out for me since he knew absolutely nothing about me or what I'd like.

All told, it was a very cool experience. The sermon today was all about listening when God speaks and not second guessing yourself on things you know are right. I really wish I would have gotten that guy - Joey, as it turns out his name is - a present. I missed out on blessing him in the really neat way that he blessed me. What could have been the harm, after all, in doing something nice for someone?

It's actually really funny to me, to think about someone - anyone - walking around for four hours, thinking about me and what I might like. I've been feeling unimportant lately. Easily discardable. On my best day, it would have meant a great deal that a stranger might care so much about me. In the midst of my recent gloom, it was enough to cement a smile on my face all day.

I actually wore the gloves he got for me today, even though it's nowhere near cold enough for gloves. They're the nicest pair I've ever owned, speaking both materially and spiritually. It's nice to think that I'll be toting them around all winter, warmed by a former stranger's good will.