Should We Be Grateful or Grumbly?

When the cashier, a cute little girl of sixteen, handed me my grocery receipt, I checked it as I pushed my cart toward the door.  The total had been less than I expected, and I was scanning it for errors. I am frugal, so I always keep a pretty accurate mental tally as I shop. When the total was different from what I expected, I started searching.

Always quick to head to the service desk when I have been overcharged, I'm also quick to point out an error in the store's favor.  It is the right thing to do, and being honest sometimes gives me an opportunity to witness. This time, it only took me a moment to spot the mistake. There at the bottom of my receipt was the reason for my reduced grocery bill.

The cashier had given me a Senior Citizen discount.

I had never seen one before, so I looked again, checking to make sure I hadn't misread it.

But no, there it was., clear as day--a five percent discount for being over the age of 65.

Those of you who know me are already laughing, but for those readers whom I haven't met, I'll let you in on the joke --  I am almost two decades away from my 65th birthday. I don't have grey hair (at least none that show). I am reasonably fit, and I passed my daughter's latest wrinkle check. Why in the world, I wondered, did the cashier give me a Senior Citizen discount?

It had to be a matter of perspective.

Though I am a long way from 65, to my 16-year old cashier, I probably looked ancient. I certainly was WAY older than she was, so in her mind, I had to be a senior citizen.

While I shook my head and chuckled a bit, I realized that like my cashier's youthful perspective skewed her ability to judge my age, my perspective often skews my ability to accurately process my own life situations.

I grumble about minor aches and pains until I comfort a friend who has cancer.

I complain about eating hamburger instead of steak until I hand a box of crackers out the window to a homeless person on the street corner

I lament about the Christmas gifts I wish I could afford until I assemble a box for an Operation Christmas Child recipient.

I complain about the socks my husband deposits daily on the floor beside his work boots, until I hug a friend whose husband died when her children were two and four years old.

I fuss that my dining room isn't big enough to seat all my Christmas guests until I serve in the food line of the homeless ministry in the park.

I chafe at long hours on my feet at work until I read the latest unemployment figures.

Like my cashier's 16-year old eyes lacked an accurate perception of my age, my self-centered eyes often lack an accurate perception of how much I have to be thankful for. If you also suffer from a self-centered myopic perspective, would you join me today in thanking God for His many blessings to us?

". . . I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength" (Philippians 4: 11-13).

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1 comment:

  1. Wow, you were lucky that day! LOL. Did that scenario happen again? It is true that one must always appreciate every single thing that happens in one's life. Time is precious, especially when you've gotten to the point where you just want to enjoy living the rest of your life.