This week I was on my way home from work and was stopped at a red light. The car at the light in front of me was also stopped and blocking much of the entrance to a business I was trying to enter. I was trying to figure out if there was enough room between my car and the one in front of me so that I could squeeze into the parking lot.
As I was making those mental measurements, I was suddenly thrown forward and caught by my seatbelt. A quick glance in my mirror and I realized a truck had just smashed into the back of my car and was pushing me into the car in front of me. I heard metal bending, saw steam start to come from under my hood and felt the pain from being thrown forward at a high velocity.
The end of the story is that a driver coming up behind me hadn’t realized that everyone was stopped at a red light and had just slammed into my car pushing me into the car in front of me. In short order the police, fire, and ambulance were on the scene and the little area of the street was a flurry of activity. It was a hot day and I was standing on the sidewalk watching all the activity. A woman from one of the shops along the street came up to me and asked if she could get me a glass of cold water. All of a sudden my mind left the accident and focused on the kindness of this woman. She didn’t have to leave what she was doing and come check on me. She made the offer out of kindness.
Remember the verse in Matthew 10 that says this: And if you give even a cup of cold water to one of the least of my followers, you will surely be rewarded.
You see, I’m certain Christ really knew the impact of giving to someone else…the power of simply kindness. When the woman at the accident asked me if I wanted some cold water, it really wasn’t about the water. It was about a woman showing an act of kindness to someone she didn’t even know. At that moment there were no racial differences, social status concerns, or philosophical differences. There was simply a woman who wanted to show she cared about me and extended an offer to help.
I’ll never know this woman’s name but she has made me look at Matthew Chapter 10 through totally different eyes. I hope that as you have opportunities, you, too, will offer a cup of water whenever you can.