When No One Is Looking

(A devotional thought from the book One Smile, One Heart)

I never expected drama in the parking lot. Three spots were open so I casually pulled into the center one. I didn’t open my door right away. Instead I sat for a few minutes, checking the messages on my phone. At some point I glanced up to notice an SUV pull in to my left. The driver was a middle-aged man and the passenger was a woman of similar age. I went back to reading my messages. And then…

WHAM! I jolted at the impact of metal slamming into metal. My head spun left to see the woman’s heavy SUV door resting against the mirror of my Beetle. I stared through my window at her in amazement. Her mouth formed an “O” and she slapped her hand over it as she stared back at me. She pulled her door back a notch and climbed out. When she closed the door, I opened mine and got out too.

“Oh! I am so sorry!” the woman exclaimed. “I didn’t know anyone was in there!”

DID SHE REALLY JUST SAY THAT???

“That’s not the point!” I replied loudly. “I don’t want my car banged up!”

“Oh, no, no, no. It’s not,” the woman proclaimed arrogantly.

I glared at her. I examined my mirror as best I could in the fading daylight. “Well, I guess it’s ok,” I stated. She turned and started walking away. I called after her, “Have a nice evening!”

Charles Marshall said, “Integrity is doing the right thing when no one else is looking.” That most certainly includes parking lots, car doors, and mirrors.

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“I know, my God, that you test the HEART and are pleased with integrity” (1 Chronicles 29:17 NIV).

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Our Last Conversation

(A devotional thought from the book One Smile, One Heart)

CoconutsI didn’t realize that it was going to be the end of her life. I was visiting Melissa at Huntsville Hospital. We were talking about the upcoming presidential election. I shared with her that I was praying for a president with three qualities: Godly values, integrity, and wisdom.

As Melissa was always willing to pray for everything and everybody, she said, “Well, I’m going to pray that way, too!”

I expressed that things had just gotten so bad in this world. She said, “Oh, Beck, they really have.”

That was the last conversation I had with Melissa. She unexpectedly slipped into unconsciousness the next day and moved on to heaven shortly thereafter.

Wanting to preserve my sweet friend, I returned in my mind to that last conversation. I parked there and contemplated it. And then, in slow motion, a truth of great magnitude rose in my spirit. The things that were so heavy on our hearts that day are no longer the slightest concern to Melissa! In fact, none of the dark horrific things on this whole planet are a worry to her now!

If only we could set our hearts on things above… our minds on things above…

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“Set your HEARTS on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” (Colossians 3:1-2 NIV).

One Smile, One Heart