Paying it forward, it’s not just words

I am a pretty calm person, avoiding confrontations and situations involving angry people.  But today I got angry.  Really angry.  When I got back to my daughter’s house, I did some heavy physical labor, hefting paving stones and pails of rock.  That helped to work it out.  But I still am ashamed of how people treat each other in this world of ours.

I was waiting in a long line in a Dollar General store as there was only one cash register open.  A gentleman told me to go ahead of him, I said he was there before me, but he just waved me ahead.  Sometimes God puts us where we are needed.

A young couple with a baby was ahead of me in line.  I was busy getting out my own card and juggling my couple items while doing it, so part of the exchange escaped me.  But when I looked up, I saw the cashier looking at the couple with a nasty smirk on her face, then she rolled her eyes and tossed their package back behind her into a cart.

It took me a moment to digest the situation and then I asked her if they had been unable to pay for their item.  It was bathroom tissue they were attempting to buy, but didn’t have the money. She said nope, they can’t get it.   They were near the front door by this time, so  I called out to them to wait, and asked the young man to come back.  I asked him how much he needed, and he said $5.27.  So I opened my purse and got out the money, handed him their toilet tissue, and as he said “thank you” I told him that when he was able, to help someone else. He said “yes, I will.”  They left and I turned to face the cashier.

There was so much I wanted to say.  So many things ran through my mind, but I bit my tongue and paid for my things, turning to once again thank the man who had let me go ahead of him.  All I can hope is that actions spoke louder in that store than words.

But I fumed all the way back to my daughter’s home.  How can people be so heartless and mean to others?  We are all in this world together, and there was no reason to not be kind enough to say I’m sorry to them and quietly and politely put the purchase behind the counter.

We would all do well to remember “but for the grace of God go I”.  An accident, a heart attack, job loss, a business closing, almost anyone could end up in the same situation.  I feel like screaming from the rooftops “don’t look down on ANYONE”.  But on second thought, go ahead, look down, and while you are, hand upoffer a hand up.  End of rant.


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