Tuesday, January 26, 2010

blessed are the meek

Last night we all went to the bowling alley. Monday's $1 dollar bowling = packed house. There was only one guy running the whole process, and he was swamped. Somehow in the craziness of signing up our group of 12, only 7 of us unknowingly didn't pay. So half way through our second game, it just stopped working because we reached our limit. We then realized which 4 of us didn't pay, and they went back and paid. Problem solved right? Well, somehow it wasn't, and the manger told us we had to pay for 3 more games to be able to finish our second game.

I passed this info along to everyone, and nobody made sense of it. So Iain and I went back up to the manager to argue with him about this. Let’s just say the argument got a little heated, something about us leaving and never coming back here. I walked away, and Iain stayed still talking to him.

2 minutes later Iain walked up with a grin saying the manager decided to turn the lane back on, something he said was impossible if we didn't pay again. So what happened in that 2 minute time frame?

Well, Iain started to walk away when he started feeling bad for the guy. It was obvious that he was over-worked and really stressed out. Iain walked back, and said he was sorry for being frustrated, and that he understood he was stressed out. The manager then asked to shake his hand, and then spurted out that he would turn the game back on, something that was impossible just a minute ago.

So we finished our game, and as we were walking out, the manager handed Iain two coupon books, EACH with 10 free bowling games in it. That's 20 free bowling games!

I feel like Iain and I both walked away that night learning something. The verse from the beatitudes rang in our ears.
"Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth."

Now Iain and I didn't exactly feel meek in that moment. Our tempers flared, and we weren't very Christ-like in the moment at all. All it took was a brief acknowledgment of the man's hard night, and his mood completely shifted. When Iain did this, he wasn't trying to sweet talk his way to a free game. All he did was realize that the man was having a hard night. Nothing more. And people can spot genuineness so easily.

Iain said something to me about learning to respond in the opposite spirit to others we come in contact with. The more frustrated people get, the more of an opportunity we have to show grace and mercy to others. It’s the joy of walking as God's sons and daughters, extending His love through our lives. And maybe you'll even get blessed with 20 free games of bowling:)

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