Last post I shared some of what I’m learning regarding “fruits of the spirit”. While on the surface it might seem like an easy process to embrace and learn, I can assure you has been pushing me out of my comfort zone.
My humbling experience happened when I was studying the “fruit” of Humilty, also known as Gentleness. I had been playing the CD in my car player for a few days. You know, the meek will inherit the earth thing. Meek sounds weak, but what meek really means is humble… humble meaning “having or showing a modest or low estimate of one’s own importance.” In this instance, pride is the opposite of humble.
On this day, I was feeling pretty darn good. In retrospect, maybe a little bit too good. I had visited with some old work friends and it was a happy day. After the work friends event, I had dropped off my friend Lori and headed to Market Basket. I try to avoid the supermarket on weekends, but it is usually when I end up having to go. And I had waited till the last minute to do this wonderful chore.
I am walking around the store, and I will admit I was distracted. I was pondering various thoughts while trying to stay focused on what I really needed at the store. I was winging it, I didn’t have a prepared list. After all, this was a “quick” shopping because the day was gorgeous and I wanted to enjoy some of it. That spurred more thoughts about what I’ll do after I leave the store…
I go along my way, adding this and that to my cart. I am secretly pleased with myself as I am gracious with other shoppers, allowing them to move about and waiting things out as needed. It can get a little crazy at Market Basket sometimes, jockeying for position to pass others in the aisles.
The store manager begins making an announcement over the loudspeaker:
“Attention Shoppers, we have a customer who has mixed up their cart with another shopper.”
“Please take a moment and look down at your cart to make sure you have yours. Come to the customer service desk if you need assistance.”
I heard it vaguely, but just kept right on rolling along. Couple of cases of water, some dog treats, aahhh my favorite section…Wine. What shall I select this week?
And the manager goes about making the announcement for a second time. Except this time sounding a little more urgent, as this customer was NOT happy that his/her cart had been hijacked.
I heard the message this time in a clearer way. I thought to myself “Who would do that?” “Who would mix up their carts like that?…”
As if to think I’m not a my own worst knucklehead.
I get all the way through the store and get to the check out. And I’m emptying the main big carriage and then I go to get the stuff in the child seat area, and there it is. None of my stuff. And someone else’s yogurt (which I never buy), ham and cheese cold cuts, a newspaper, and a few other things.
It Finally Dawns On Me…
I look up at the man who is behind me in line and I say “Oh my goodness, this isn’t my stuff!”
He said “They were making the announcement in the store just a few minutes ago. Didn’t you hear it? Go bring this right up to the customer service desk, someone might be waiting.”
I do, and of course, the woman at the desk is holding me up. She’s acting like she doesn’t know anything about a missing cart, and starts asking her colleagues:
“Hey Sue, was an announcement made about a missing cart?
“Was an announcement made about a missing cart?”
Sue: “A missing carrt?”
“Yea a missing cart”…
All the while this is unfolding, my groceries are through the checkout process and the nice gentleman is waiting for me to return to paying for my groceries so then he can pay for HIS groceries.
I’m getting very antsy at the window.
I abruptly and impatiently say: “Umm, I really gotta go, I was paying for my stuff when I realized this wasn’t my stuff. I have most of it. I’m leaving this here. Now. Right here. Thanks”
And I abandon it in front of the service desk and I hurry back to what is now HALF of my groceries. Of course I do not fully realize that chestnut yet.
So at this point in time, I’m obsessing about my lack of awareness that this happened, and how could I not notice? I’m barely paying any attention to what’s happening around me as my emotions are soaring with embarrassment.
Ruminating and feeling a bit low, I put my groceries in the trunk.
“What an idiot” I hear my inside voice saying to myself…
I get in the car, and guess what’s on the radio? The humility CD blares on and oh boy….I got it.
Looking back now, the experience could have been worse or more embarrassing. I never did meet the shopper whose cart I had hijacked…they could have gotten upset with me, created a scene and so on. God was merciful with me. I mean, I kind of asked for it. How can I be upset about it? Then I started giggling to myself…which prompted me to postt this on my Facebook profile:
Good to remember that humbling experiences happen to us all.
Stay tuned for the next big lesson..it will be a good one !