Look for ways to refresh those the Lord brings into your life every day.
Posted in , Mar 22, 2015
The day was summer-beautiful and my boys had been given charge of our neighbor’s dog. We didn’t have a dog at the time, and the responsibility was treasured.
“Georgia loves to be outside,” Bob said. “If you boys play out, she’ll want to play, too.”
My boys were all about being outdoors. Together, they and the giant dog ran the length of our yard. Their little-boy legs pumped hard to keep up with Georgia’s stride. Back and forth. To and fro. Along the perimeter of our wrought iron fence.
The boys’ joy was a laughter-song that brought rhythm to the running.
But after a while, Georgia began to lag. Her head dipped. She panted. She was didn’t have the stamina of my sons.
She was tired.
My boys had worn the poor girl thin.
“She’s thirsty, Gabriel said. “I’ll get water.” He dashed inside and returned, tottering, with Georgia’s full-to-the-brim bowl.
She lapped the water and sprawled in the sun.
“I want to help, too” Isaiah said.
I explained that Georgia wasn’t used to this much exercise. She’d recover. But Isaiah disappeared into the garage and returned with a pail and a paintbrush.
He filled his bucket and sat by her side. Then he watered her coat in long, smooth strokes.
“There, girl,” he whispered. “I’ll help you get cool.”
Georgia was a tolerant, gentle lady. She allowed Isaiah to come to her aid. I sat and watched because there was something precious in this sight.
The boys were offering refreshment. They came alongside another to provide comfort the best way they could.
It inspired me to look for ways to refresh the people the Lord brings to my life. We have the opportunity every day.
A generous person will prosper; he who refreshes others will also be refreshed. Proverbs 11:25 NIV
It’s the sweet blessing we receive when we reach into the needs of others with God’s kind of love and care. It’s what happens to our own spirit when our time and energy and resources are used to benefit someone else.
It’s the sweet flow of return that comes from seeing a sorrow, a pain, a need, a want–and stretching toward it rather than standing still or turning away.
I sat that day and wondered if the return is a blessing from God, some form of personal refreshment completely unrelated to refreshment we’ve shared. Or if it’s in the value of the giving. If it’s that fulfilling kind of soul-soaking, glory-to-the-Lord feeling that comes when we’re loving others and in doing so, we’re loving Him.
I wasn’t sure.
But I could see the satisfaction of giving–of providing refreshment–shining through my sons’ smiles.