Compassion is the Best Part

I finished up my grocery shopping and went to take my place waiting in one of the two lanes that was open.  

As always, I was just happy to be in line. As long as I feel like I’ve secured my spot, I’m actually rather patient about waiting. Really, if I’m by myself, I can wait for extraordinary amounts of time without being bothered.  

Having little people with along changes this a bit as it becomes an endless game of saying, “No, it’s too early for a candy bar”,  “Nope, we don’t need mini raisin boxes”,  “No, Daddy doesn’t need any mints…,” etc.



I glanced over and noticed the woman in the aisle next to me was looking around for something. I didn’t think too much of it. It was my ever-observant three-year-old who actually spotted a fifty dollar bill that had fallen and gotten lodged between some packages of mints. (Perhaps this is a little known benefit of being right at level with all those treats!)  

Little G. retrieved the cash and returned it to the woman.   I was happy she’d found it and proud she’d immediately returned it, but really, again, I didn’t think too much of it.  

A few minutes later, I heard mumbled apologies coming from the lady who’d been in front of the woman who’d dropped her cash. She started leaving the store, empty-handed and red-faced. The cashier kindly offered to hold her items, but she clearly just wanted to escape with as much dignity as she could muster.

  The woman who’d lost the fifty dollar bill called her back and, ignoring her embarrassed protests, paid for her groceries.  

“Only moments ago, I had written fifty dollars off as lost. Honestly, that would have been an inconvenience more than anything. I’m grateful I can put it to better use.”


  I watched the scene unfold. Said “thank you” to the man who complemented me on my daughter’s determined honesty. Heard the embarrassed woman quietly thank the compassionate stranger– she had been buying groceries to take care of her toddler grandson and hadn’t realized how costly it might be. I saw the cashiers’ demeanors soften and warm.

  The entire room seemed aglow, somehow. Small circumstances and decisions that added up to so many lives changed and affected. Every one of us left with a little brighter outlook on the world and even more determination to make it even better.

  Grocery shopping that morning had become the best part of my whole day.

  There are beautiful things happening all around us, friends. May you be blessed to witness them today.


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