Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Who's Watching You?

I had gone through the buffet line and sat down to enjoy my meal. The restaurant was crowded and the only seat available was next to a family already eating. I put my food on the table, bowed my head and thanked God for the meal. I looked up and heard the young boy next to me say, "Dad, we forgot."

His Dad looked over and asked, "Forgot what?"

"To pray"

I silently said another prayer: "Thank You, God, for allowing me to be a witness."

It may be the kids, the neighbors, the people at work, or the dozens of nameless faces you pass by every day, but you are noticed. Your actions, big or little, can have an effect on theirs that you may never know. For example, you might be at the store, pay your bill, receive too much change, and return the overage. You may think nothing of it. It's just what you naturally do. But for the person in line behind you, your example may be just what they needed to see. Your action may have impacted their life, but you don't or won't know about it.

What about how you handle anger? A driver cuts you off, and you blurt out hellfire phrase at them as the kids listen. Will what you say be a positive influence on the young minds alongside you or in the back seat? Will your reaction give them a quick-and-easy lesson in how not to keep their cool? Yep. Whether we like it or not, others are listening.

I recently took a flight on a small aircraft and sat in front of a father and his young son. The seats were so close that a private conversation was impossible. I put on my headphones and listened to the tunes for the flight, but the time came when I had to "turn off all electronic devices." I then heard the father talking to his son. He was explaining to him the mechanics of the landing -- how the flaps worked, the landing gear, and the brakes. That was a dad who was making a difference in his son's life; he talked with him.

Then there was the man who ran to the door ahead of a woman who had her hands full of packages. He opened the door for her and wished her a good day. He brought a smile to a stranger's lips and offered a model of behavior for others.

Guys, we are noticed by what we do and the words we speak. Let us always show others our best.

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