Sunday, March 19, 2017

Do Unto Others...

I am not sure I have ever skied in such stunning scenery as the snow-park an hour from Seattle. Sister Wendy and I drove an hour to the ski park, not certain if my past year of breast cancer, frozen shoulder, and recent final procedure in breast reconstruction which I am still recovering from would allow me to ski at all. My right arm is quite weak, and I use my arms a lot in Cross-country skiing.

We arrived, and the trip was worth it just for the scenery from the parking lot.

These pictures do not begin to do it justice. I was enthralled. We slapped on our skis. Now to be entirely accurate, I slapped on my skis. Wendy seemed to be having a great deal of trouble. She told me to do laps while she fiddled with her bindings. I did so. Click on the triangle to view this video below. It was like I had not had a few years of no cross country skiing. It felt like home.

Sadly, home is where Wendy had left the boots for the particular skis she had brought. She would not be able to ski. She had snowshoes in the car however, and strapped those on. She intended to jog in the snowshoes to keep up with me. Unfortunately, the snowshoe straps broke within minutes.

"Just go ski and have fun," she told me, "I will jog in my boots and I'll see you when you get back."

This was totally unselfish of her. She loves cross-country skiing as much or even more than I do. However, my boots don't fit her so there really was nothing I could do but go have fun.

I stopped to take a few pictures but it was readily apparent that the pictures could not begin to capture the grandeur of the setting. So instead, I spent an hour and a half skiing, incredulous that each magnificent scene was more gorgeous than the last.

So, I have a question for God. Here is my sister trying her hardest to be sure I have the world's best experience in Seattle. She bought me a ticket to fly me to Seattle, gave me her bedroom, worked out an intricate itinerary of joy, cooked luscious meals, and drove me an hour to ski. Why would God not have slipped in the right pair of boots so she could ski too?

Maybe He wanted me to know that my mistreatment of Wendy when we were children was not gracious, loving, kind or fair-- scratching her with my finely honed fingernails, being jealous of her manifest talents, and constantly grumbling about having to wear her hand-me-downs and endure the endless teachers greeting me with such high expectations ("Oh! You are Wendy's sister!!!). How had I missed what a lovely human being Wendy was? (Thank you God for the lesson, but please, be sure Wendy has the right boots today.)

I wonder how many other people I have not recognized the unique value of because of petty differences between me and them? I suspect way too many. I bet I am not alone in marginalizing those who we don't agree with, don't understand, or are just plain envious of.

When I got back, a little girl and her family asked me if I was Wendy's sister.
"Yes!" I said, "How do you know Wendy and how do you know I am her sister?"
"You look like her. She told us she brought the wrong ski boots, but told you to go ahead and ski without her. She found an old pair of snowshoes in the garbage and was trying to see if they still worked."

They didn't but I thought it was resourceful of Wendy to try.

I was so proud and delighted to be Wendy's sister. And to think I look like her!


Ephesians 4:32 

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Matthew 7:12 

“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.

Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.

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