Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.” Philippians 2:4
I never was tall. All my life I have been on the short side. Now to be clear that isn’t always bad. The basement at 217 where my wife Judy and I live is not tall either. I have watched many a repairman bump their head on the various pipes that hang down. Most, though not all, I am able to cruise beneath…sometimes by a little and sometimes by a little more…but rarely is there a bump. Being on the not tall side does have its advantages.
With that said, I am sometimes just a little jealous of those taller than me. When I stand next to someone in a photograph I always wince if my partner is, oh, about six foot or so. When this happens, I struggle and strain to reach my full height of just under five foot eight…attempting to close the gap as much as I can. I’ve been known to stand on a rock or curb to help compensate. Works every time.
Now there is a circumstance that all we height challenged, males or females, wrestle with. When I go into an auditorium or movie theater, either solo or with Judy, we look for a seat that has a good view of whatever it is we are there to see—whether it is a screen or a speaker. We make sure no one is in front of us and then we began to pray. You might think that a strange time to have a prayer meeting but trust me it is quite appropriate. You see, we are praying that the Jolly Green Giant has decided not to attend the event that night. We are also praying that if he does, he will not sit in front of us. This prayer is rarely answered.
We will be chatting and praying and out of the corner of our eye, we catch a glimpse of the Jolly Green Giant and sure enough he chooses the row and seat in front of us. Dang. At that point, unless we grow or he slouches in his seat, it is game over. Our choice is to move to another seat or begin exercising our neck muscles to see if we can see around our Ho, Ho, Ho friend. It can be frustrating. It can be infuriating. It should be neither. I mean we aren’t talking about the end of the world. Or are we?
You see, I am certain that Jolly didn’t plan to be a wall that night. I am sure he didn’t scan the room and carefully choose a seat in front of us. It wasn’t his fault, and it shouldn’t have messed with our evening. The problem was my reaction, or overreaction. The bottom line is to do what you can, when you can, and work around the rest. Of course, I suppose you could pack pillows to sit on but that too might be an overreaction.
Before we close, a word for my Jolly Green friends. You can probably help by scanning the rows to make sure you are not blocking someone’s view. Often, by moving a seat or two, you can help the person behind you. Why not give it a try? Of course, by now you are probably thinking there has to be just a bit more to this story than not being able to see…and there is. The big truth is all of us, short or tall, wide, or thin, should always be alert to be considerate of those around us. We all have the right to side or stand where we want to but when we choose to think of others, well, everything is just better. Of course, this works in many ways, helping someone whose arms are full of groceries, giving up a close parking spot or even putting your grocery cart in the buggy corral. Once we start looking, there are so many ways we can be a blessing to others.
Paul, the guy who wrote a bunch of the New Testament, had this in mind when he said, “Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.” That is something each one of us can do every day. Take a moment and look around for ways that you can make the person in front of you, beside you or around you, feel important. Let them know that they do matter. You just might make their day…or their night at the movies…a little better. Need some guidance? Just ask the Father and He will be glad to help. He’s got this. Bro. Dewayne