Graceful people and brokenness…

There are some people whose way of loving and looking after those around them is beautiful. I am privileged to know a few of them. One of them (although she will hate me saying it!) is my wife.

Their way of being is a gift to people around them. It can often be seen in a creative playfulness that seeks always to find ways to bring good things into the lives of those around them. So here is a list of things that I have seen some of my friends (and my wife) do in recent times;

A gift of an MP3 player, full of special music pre-loaded.

A trophy made up with ‘the resilience cup’ engraved on it, as a gift to celebrate the end of someones medical treatment.

Little cards made up with a message/meditation for every day of a trip away or a hospital stay.

Soup for weary workers.

Needs spotted, and quietly filled.

The spiritual gift of remembering anniversaries- birthdays and wedding days, but also days of bereavement or loss.

Card and letter writing.

Refusing to see the bad in people, and hoping for the best.

A travel pack made up for friends who have a long journey to make.

The people I know who do these kinds of things on a daily basis- they are blessed as they bless others. But it occurred to me recently, that they do not necessarily do this from a position of strength.

By this I mean that sensitive, kind, thoughtful people often carry their own scars.

Something put them out on the edge- whether this was childhood trauma, or difficult life experience. For some, this becomes a bitter stain. Others find that their swords are beaten into ploughshares…

I think this is one of the ways that we see the Grace of God in the very fabric of humanity. Bad can be made good. Healing can come as we seek to heal. Sensitivity is born in the sensitised.

I have heard this instinct to serve others described as a need-to-be-needed. Or the application of that horrible phrase ‘people pleaser’. It may well be the case that there are unhealthy limits to this.

But my life, and the lives of many around me, would be so much the less without these ministers of grace.