Respecting Miss Mabel

Woman helping senior woman on walker

Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.—ROMANS 12:10 [NIV]

“Miss Mabel,” I pleaded. “It’s only three bucks. Just forget it. I was going shopping anyway!”

Usually we bantered back and forth about these things, but today she shot me a no-nonsense glance. “Victoria,” she said, “if you don’t allow me to pay you and add a little extra when I ask you to buy something, I’ll not ask again. Your gas and time are valuable, too. Now take it.”

I quietly stuffed the five-dollar bill into my back pocket.

“Now help me in,” she said, wheeling her chair toward her bed. “And please fetch me my Sprite from the kitchen.”

After settling in, Miss Mabel took a deep breath and explained that errand running should involve dignity on her part and respect on mine.

“I used to drive that old Ford there in the yard, you know. Oh, I’d spin around wherever and whenever I took a pleasin’. My world seemed big then. And now? Well, thank heavens I still have my money. I know God has ‘deep pockets’ as you say, but even Jesus paid taxes. Allow me to handle it, please.”

I felt a chastened and a bit ashamed. My serving Miss Mabel took a necessary turn that day as I committed to honoring her in ways that had little to do with money.

“I will, Miss Mabel,” I said.

Today's Prayer:

Lord, help me serve others in a way that honors them.

Adapted from Strength & Grace: Daily Devotions for Caregivers, a new publication from Guideposts