Grace Offered

Monday of the Third Week of Lent

My head seems to be fixed onto my shoulders again today and my mind working.

For that I am grateful.

I’m also thankful for all your good wishes and prayers over this past week as I’ve stumbled into health again; and I’m very thankful for a friend who brought me yogurt yesterday, Cliff being busy with all the things that we usually do together and that he was doing alone.

Yogurt. A small thing and yet exactly what I needed to help with my healing after a week plus of medications of all sorts and varying toxicity. And not just any yogurt, mind you, rather she made a special trip to Trader Joe’s for Greek yogurt.

Today’s reading is about small things and special trips. Naaman, an army commander and greatly respected, was a leper. A slave girl suggests he present himself for healing to the prophet Elisha for healing. After some detours in the process (an interesting story in 2 Kings 5) Naaman finally reaches Elisha, arriving with horses and chariots and a complete contingent of servants The prophet doesn’t come outside but rather sends out a message for him to go bathe in the river seven times.

Of course, Naaman gets angry at the way he’s treated: I thought he would surely come out and stand there to invoke the Lord his God, and would move his hand over the spot, and thus cure the leprosy. Are not the rivers of  Damascus, the Abana and the Pharpar, better….Could I not wash in them and be cleansed? But his servants prevail and say that if the prophet has asked him to do something extraordinary, he would have done it. So do the simple, they say. “Wash and be clean.” So he does and he is.

Most of us want to do great things. It’s the little things that are the hardest. The simple things. Like buying a friend yogurt; like saying hello and smiling; like holding a door open for another. We all forget those small things in the quest for the large.

Today, look for the small ways you can offer grace and healing to others. At the end of the day, list the small moments so you remember them. Maybe you can even practice them again tomorrow. And maybe your practice will help you notice when others offer grace to you.