My cashier is distracted and keeps turning back around to see her fellow teammate at the next checkout line. She gave me the normal salutation and of course I responded back with the same pleasantries. Who is ever ready for the “what happens next” scenarios? She began to tell me I wouldn’t believe what just happened to her friend working behind her. I wish I could say otherwise, but that’s just not the world we live in anymore.
Her friend wasn’t just spoken to in a horrible way by a customer. She was demeaned loudly beyond words. A customer had come to her checkout line who didn’t have the 20 Max items in her cart. She had about 40. When the cashier told her that she would take her this time, but that she really shouldn’t in the future – the customer “went there.” Allegedly, she pointed in the face of the employee and told her that she had a college education and that’s why the cashier on the other hand worked at Walmart and to never address her again. Oh boy. My chest hurts a little just typing. I somehow managed to verbalize how sorry I was and that the customer’s next breath, was far from being dependent upon her education. To be honest, I was happy that my cashier found my very serious remark amusing.
Less than two weeks later, I’m in line with my favorite cashier while food shopping. If “Todd’s” line is not too long, I will purposefully seek him out. People go out of their way literally, to go say hi to him. Todd explained how nice it was to be “popular” at his place of work and how very unlike high school this was. He was made fun of and harassed on a regular basis. Todd’s voice is very naturally high pitched. I’m willing to say the B word regarding his high school life. Bullied. Todd didn’t. I’ve been alive long enough now to be quite familiar with human nature. I bet bullied is an understatement.
Just then Todd began to minister to me. Literally. He explained that he finally realized he had to engage differently to literally survive high school. He took up going home and praying for the people that emotionally tormented him. My muscles started to relax. I slumped over the little counter area where they usually have the card chargers all set up. My breathing steadied.
He explained that while the martyr Stephen was being stoned to death, he asked God to forgive his murderers. Yeah, A. Can you imagine that? And B. Can you imagine that this young man follows that “ideology?” You know…that whole “praying for your enemies” mentality. He finished while not missing a beat with the groceries, that he may truly be the only one who prays for them. So, HE’s pondering THEIR miserable estate. I told him what an encouragement he had been. He really had no idea. I had nothing negative, let alone dreadful on my mind and yet this gentle soul STILL lifted my spirit.
Selfishly, I wonder if I’ll be able to reproduce what Todd knows again. It must be genuine. You can’t feign that heart, nor would you want to. There are days you’ll walk on air. Not water. And for the days that you don’t, will you rip yourself to shreds for failing the test? It’s better not to. Honestly. You’re not in any of it alone. You may feel you are at times, but I promise you’re not.