She had said the words a thousand times before. Maybe even a million.
Was anyone listening?
I haven’t flown much in recent years, Lord, but every time it seems the same. Like yesterday.
Flight attendants are called the most important “ safety equipment” aboard a commercial airplane. They are so much more than glorified waiters and waitresses. They are trained to help save lives, should the unthinkable occur.
So You always prompt me to watch and listen to whoever is explaining the safety procedures just before takeoff. I have heard the words hundreds of times before, but it’s a matter of R-E-S-P-E-C-T… isn’t it, Lord? They deserve focused attention.
I couldn’t help but notice the bowed heads yesterday as our flight attendant did “her thing.” She bravely looked out over seats in her section as she went through her demonstration. Speaking to the tops of heads bowed in “worship” of hand-held electronic devices.
I watched her, hoping to make eye contact. So she would know someone was paying attention to her. Noticing her. Perhaps so used to being ignored, she just stared ahead wearing a “plastic” smile.
She packed up her gear and came toward me. It was my chance! I smiled and asked: “Do you ever get tired to talking to the tops of heads?”
She leaned in and we shared A Moment. Like old friends. She quoted a funny line from the movie, Miss Congeniality. When the lead character also put on a plastic smile to get through a trying time. We both laughed. A Connection.
She came by later with snacks. I was smiling long before she got to me. She drew near and quoted the same funny line. We laughed again. She said, “You’re going to think about this for a long time!” I replied, “I’ve already been thinking about it!”
We laughed. But sadly, she puts on that plastic smile every day. I put my hand on her arm and added: “You are so dear. You are a person who deserves to be noticed. To be listened to.” The look on her face spoke volumes.
My words had reached her heart. Except they weren’t my words at all… were they, Lord? They were Your words to her.
How often do we “look” without seeing, Lord? Or “hear” without listening? Who do we walk by so often they become like the scenery? So we ignore them altogether, as they if they aren’t even there?
How many around us are just waiting for someone – anyone – to notice them? To affirm — with a look or a smile — that they are worthy of Notice? And Attention? Respect? Encouragement? Even Love?
What if our eyes – the eyes of Your children, Lord – are the ones that make contact? Please give us eyes that see people like You do! And when others look into our eyes, may it be Your eyes they see looking back at them!
“One thing I do know, I was blind but now I see!” (John 9:25)