Oh dear sweet blog...how I have neglected you. It's been 3 1/2 years since my last post, and so much life has happened since I last wrote...but...that's not what I am going to write about today. Today's post is about Bill.
Bill is a new man in my life. He is very handsome, has an awesome smile, and gives great hugs. He is also in his eighties and is the greeter at our local Meijer. I have had my eye on Bill for a while, but didn't get to fully introduce myself until the other night.
I was a woman on the hunt. I had the most ahhh-mazing roasted garlic hummus at a friend's house the other night and I couldn't get it out of my mind. This trip to Meijer marked my FOURTH different grocery store visit in one day to find this rare treasure. You see, here's the thing, I absolutely love love love a good treasure hunt and I become very determined (ie slightly obsessed...FINE...completely obsessed) when the object of my affection alludes me. Hence the ridiculous amount of grocery stores in one day...just. for. hummus. However, I just KNEW this one would have my treat! Little did I know what a true treasure I would find.
I walked in with a determined excitement just knowing I would be dining on my hard earned hummus for dinner. That's when I saw him. My. Favorite. Greeter. You see...this wasn't our first encounter. Every time I saw this wonderful man he always had something unbelievably kind to say to anyone who would listen and was so completely genuine. All it took was him telling me I looked pretty one time and I was hooked...seriously...I am such a sucker for white hair and kind eyes. Still, I didn't know who he was just how he made me feel...and he always made me feel so very special.
Back to my entrance. So in I walked, saw my favorite greeter, and right next to him was the very last little cart (fyi...they're my favorites). I walked up, asked if I could have that very last little cart and that's where our journey began. He had been in the middle of helping someone corral carts in and the moment I asked, his complete attention turned to me. He leaned close and very seriously said "Miss, the only way you can have this cart is if you do two things for me." I was intrigued, and I wanted the cart, so I agreed. He said "First, I need a smile". Geez...super easy...I am great at smiles. I flashed him my pearly whites. Done! Then he hesitated and he said "and second, I need a hug". So, I gave him the biggest hug I could muster. I hugged him with every ounce of joy and love in me. If he needed a hug I was gonna give him one to remember. We then had a wonderful conversation for about 5 minutes or more right at the front of Meijer, with a few more hugs thrown in, and he made me promise I wouldn't leave without giving him one last hug. I promised. Bee lined it to the hummus...and...found it!!!! VICTORY!!! I may or may not have slipped in some chocolate into the cart also. A girl's gotta have dessert! And, with that my treasure hunt was complete.
As promised, I came back for one last hug before I left and introduced myself. That's when I learned that my new friend's name is Bill. Once again, Bill stopped everything he was doing to give me his full attention and chat. I left feeling so...blessed. I came in that night with the hope of finding hummus, and came out with my treasured hummus and a beautiful new friend.
God has brought Bill to my mind so many times these last few days. So much so that I am blogging after 3 1/2 years. :) You see, God reminded me that he is a lot like my new friend Bill. Just like Bill, God is always there to greet us. He wants to greet us first no matter where we go in life. Just like Bill, God always has something unbelievably kind to say to anyone and everyone who will listen, and is so completely genuine. Just like Bill, God's complete attention turns to us the moment we ask. He will 'chat' with us as long as we need and as often as we want, and will make us feel like we are the only one in the world. Just like Bill, God always invites us to love others. Sometimes in big ways like forgiving the unforgivable, and sometimes in small ways like a simple smile to a stranger or a hug for a friend. Just like Bill, even when we don't fully know Him we know how He makes us feel...so very special and blessed. Just like Bill, God is a gentleman. He never forces himself on anyone who doesn't come to him first. Just like Bill, He is just waiting to bless us...waiting for us to slow down, stop, and notice him. And...just like Bill, God watches as most of us rush past Him with a quick smile and a friendly nod in our hurry to 'live our life', not realizing the blessing and true treasure we are passing by.
How often do we go through our lives 'treasure hunting', determined to find our next treasure at all costs (a new job, a new home, expanding our family, making new friends, losing weight, gaining weight...the list can go on and on). And, although, these treasures are beautiful and wonderful if we are too focused only on what we want we may be passing by the greatest treasures, God's treasures, just because we aren't looking for them. How many times, how many YEARS, have I passed by Bill and never realized the true treasure he is? How many of God's treasures have I walked passed in search of something I thought I HAD to have. I don't have that answer, but I do know that I want to slow down. I don't want to 'rush past Him with a quick smile and a friendly nod'. I want to stop and say hello. I want to be His friend. I want to keep building a deep, lasting relationship where when I run into a grocery store to get hummus I get a new friend who reminds me that God's way of life is always so much sweeter than mine.
I want all my treasure hunts to begin and end with Him.