My daughter and I parked the cart over by the side of the rack and began looking at the cute beach towels. Suddenly, I heard a crash and glanced as I saw a man ram a cart into the display and mutter something about people parking their carts in the aisle and how rude that is.
As I looked, I noticed it was our cart he had pushed. I immediately began singing "Let it Go" from the movie, Frozen...of course. (So many applications to that song.)
Well, I was able to just "let it go" and go on with a rather enjoyable Walmart experience. Then, I got in line at the checkout counter. As I was placing my items on the conveyor belt, I noticed some unpleasantness going on behind me in line. There were 3 ladies behind me and apparently one of them had "cut" in front of the other by positioning herself to the side and in front of her like she was charging ahead for the finish of the Kentucky Derby.
I had to laugh to myself. However, the lady behind the eager race horse did not find the whole scenario quite as humorous. She did try to be gracious and told the lady to go ahead and that she could see she was obviously in a hurry. The race horse said, "Ok" and began placing her items behind mine on the belt.
Well, the lady behind her could not contain herself any longer and began to inform the lady about how rude she was being, to which, the lady had no response. She just continued placing items on the belt and then she stood right where I needed to stand to pay.
Still amused by the fiasco, I politely told the lady I still needed to pay and asked her if she could move back. She did...for about 2 minutes, and then stepped back to where I needed to stand.
Well, the cashier was done ringing up my items by this time. So, I smiled and laughed and told the lady I needed to get to that spot to pay, unless of course, she wanted to pay for my items.
She smiled and laughed too and something changed. I think something happened in her when I reacted in kindness and even humor to this tense situation. She immediately had a change of heart and suddenly this race horse that was in such a hurry, backed up, pushed her groceries to the back of the belt and insisted that the lady behind her go first.
A spiritual mentor of mine, Karen Ellison, the founder of Deeper Still Ministry, talks about reacting to people in the opposite spirit. It is the same principle as blessing those who curse you. When you are kind to those who are unkind or rude to you, something happens in the spiritual realm that we cannot see. It disarms the forces that are at work to tempt us into sin.
I could have easily gotten offended and irritated at that lady for continuing to act impatient and being where I needed to stand. And, many times in the past, I haven't responded in love like I should have. However, this day I did and I saw the result! Sometimes we may not see the result, but we just need to know that God is working even if we don't see it.
1. Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. Luke 6:28
2. A soft word turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15: 1
3. Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all sin. Proverbs 17:9