Someone I know made a comment on Facebook today that reminded me of something that happened to us a few weeks ago. A few weeks ago Chris and I were walking to the car after the last Dallas Mavericks basketball game of the season. We had stayed late so by the time we were walking to the car there was really no one left on the streets. As we walked the path we always take to the car a gentleman started walking our direction. As we got closer to him he started walking up to us and we stopped. He was collecting money for a program he was in for those who are recovering from drug and alcohol abuse. This program creates some type of newspaper flyers. We really couldn't understand everything he was saying about the paper, but we listened to him and then gave him some money. And then he said.... "So many people just pass by and never look up. Thank you for noticing me. Can I pray over you?" And then he prayed a beautiful prayer over us as we all held hands. Chris and I both said his comment of "thank you for noticing me" really broke our hearts.
I know that we can sometimes get calloused because of all the people standing on street corners collecting money. But I have learned to listen to my heart and God's prompting. There is usually something I feel inside when I know that God is calling me to reach out to someone. That night, even though we were the only ones on the street, something inside both of us told us to stop. And his words, "Thank you for noticing me", continue to haunt me. It is so easy to hand someone money or a bottle of water or whatever you choose to do and be on your way. But his words will make me be more intentional about really looking them in the eyes and really noticing them. Because so many times, no one else will even look their way; much less look them in the eyes.
Jesus "noticed" the woman at the well and had a conversation with her when others just stood around talking about her. How many times do we really "notice" people around us. When others are talking about someone they see, do we talk along with them, or do we "notice" them and do something about it.
It is really easy to get so wrapped up in where we are going that we don't "notice" what or who is around us. I want to pay attention. I want to be aware of my circumstances and those around me. I want to see people the way Jesus did. I want to be brave and not afraid to have those conversations that others may not want to have. I want to be the hands and feet of Jesus. It is my prayer that we will all begin to "notice" people more.