On Saturday, I took the train into Chicago. I was ready for a change in scenery and knew that if I didn't do something different, I might end the silent retreat early. So off I went on the 10:54am train.
I found a Starbucks about 10 minutes from the train station and decided to sit and read for awhile. Instead, I ended up watching people as I prayed through the list of people I had on my lap. It was a busy place and I found myself intrigued by the people I saw and the conversations I heard. So many people busily going about their lives without hardly a glance at those around them.
We live such isolated lives - caught up in our own activities, our own thoughts, our own problems. Look up! Look around you! There are needy, hurting people all around. Take a moment to pray for someone around you. When we focus on others, we will find our own burdens are lightened and we see the world in a while new way. We weren't meant to live in the isolation we put upon ourselves. We were designed for community, for fellowship with our Creator and with each other. I wonder how much damage our souls sustain when we allow ourselves to live day after day alone in a crowd - when we don't open ourselves up to others. How long before we aren't even sure how to reach out to others? How long before we become calloused to our need & the needs of those around us?
Look up! Look around! There are hurting people all around you. Don't get so caught up in yourself, your problems, your pain, that you neglect others. Pray that God would soften your heart to the needs of others.
Who knew such thoughts could come while drinking coffee and watching people in a coffee shop?