I went to the doctor today because I’m not feeling well. I have a sinus infection according to the man in the white lab coat. He prescribed an antibiotic, drinking lots of fluids and “if you are tired, rest.” That last bit was interesting...if I feel tired, rest. As far as my family is concerned I’m always tired. And cold. Of course, when you are sick, it’s a different kind of tired.
I’ve noticed lately that many of us are tired in another way. We are weary, I think. We are constantly bombarded with ways to give, people to help, charities that need our money. My email right before the elections was filled with people needing my hard earned cash to make sure their candidate was the one elected. I stopped reading them. I deleted them without even giving them a chance to make their point. I’ve even gotten things mailed to me via the regular postal service: support this overseas woman making baskets, this poor farmer from the Philippines, this family trying to start up a small store for their village. I cannot possibly support all these people, worthy though they may be. I am weary to the point that I can’t even see their need.
In in the gospel for this Sunday, Jesus sees a widow who gives “all she had” to the church and I thought, uh-oh, I’m a slacker! I don’t give all I have. So I started reading what this story might be about and it came to me. I don’t think we need to give ALL we have, but we are to see the need and not ignore it. One of the things I read suggested that instead of just thinking about giving to the poor or homeless, we find out about one particular person; their name, how they got in this predicament, what might they need and address this actual person. Recognizing them as a PERSON, not a label (homeless), but as John or Jane or Harry. The people in the Temple that day didn’t even see the widow—disciples included. What can we do to say, “I see you,” and not to just the poor, homeless or forgotten, but the person sitting in the pew next to you or across from you?
Yes, I am sick and tired (but the heating pad is on my feet, so not too cold right now). But I think I may be able to see a little better after thinking about this Bible reading. And hopefully I will not be too weary to see the person in need, whether they are sick or not. I’m asking God to help me open my eyes. And I am taking my medicine, too.