by Roselyn Staples
I could hardly wait to get there. I had very careful directions along a winding country road…, “when you have gone a mile you will see a school bus sign, turn your left blinker on immediately and turn left at the next driveway. Follow the drive all the way to the end. Then you will be at our house.” It was a beautiful place—on a lake—another time it would be good to just gaze at God’s creation, but that’s not why I came today. I only glanced at the surroundings because I was looking for this man I really wanted to meet. He is the father of one of my friends and is staying at his surgeon son’s home because he is recovering from “the toughest general surgical procedure” there is. A remarkable feat at 86 years old. But the compelling reason that made me want to meet him is that he has been a pastor for 66 years.
As I entered this home, this regal man walked easily toward me. He was wearing a sweater over surgical scrubs. His eyes were bright and his voice, although soft, was articulate and confident. His frame seemed almost too small for the enthusiasm of his spirit. I had to remind myself he was recovering from surgery. We exchanged compliments we had heard about each other as his daughter-in-law introduced me to his wife. This man, whom I shall call Pastor Pete, broke into such a lyrical form of speech that I wondered if he was reciting poetry. It turned out to be the case.
SOMETHING GOOD ABOUT YOU*
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the people we meet would say, “I know something good about you,” Then would treat you just that way?
And wouldn’t it be wonderful if each handshake warm and true carried with it that assurance, “I know something good about you?”
And wouldn’t this old world be happier if the good that’s in us all was the only thing about us that people would ever bother to recall?
And wouldn’t it be happier still if they’d praise the good they see? For there is a lot of goodness in the worst of you and me.
I think it’s wonderful That way of thinking too. “You know something good about me, And I know something good about you.
We smiled in mutual appreciation of this truth and then the four of us settled comfortably in a beautiful sunroom that had a lake view. Joining us was the biggest dog I had ever seen, too friendly to be frightening and readily assumed the right to full participation with us. I made Pastor Pete promise that he would tell me if he got tired but that I had some questions I really wanted to ask him. He just grinned and we began. l’ll continue the story of my conversation with Pastor Pete in future blogs.
How sweet it is to begin a new conversation when the groundwork for kindness, respect and pleasantness has been laid. Is this not what Jesus would want and expect of us? I know something good about you, and you know something good about me.
What new conversations do you need to begin? You can start right here. I look forward to having a new converstation with you. Please share your faith stories, questions, prayers, and thoughts of senior living with me and then I’ll know something good about you.
*recited from memory based upon the poem I Know Something Good About You written by Louis C. Shimon