Psalm 9:2 I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.
Years ago I lived in a Townhouse community. The rows of two story units adjoined together in groupings of 4. In townhouse number one lived a single lady with her young son. Day in and day out she would whip her car into her parking space and blaring from her windows, which always seemed to be down, was Christian music. Sometimes the music moved her so much that as she drove with one hand she was praising with the other uplifted. Often times you could hear her singing along with the music. Other days, the car was filled with the sound of a sermon she was listening to, no doubt at the time on cassette tape. If she was not in her car, it wouldn't take long before you could hear her music or sermon coming from inside her unit.
I have to admit, that although I was a Christian, I felt weird being around THAT Girl. I thought she was crazy. I thought she was too obsessed with her music and tapes. I thought something was wrong with THAT Girl. I couldn't place my finger on it, but I was pretty sure that no one in our little group of four really cared much for THAT Girl and as a matter of fact, none of us ever talked with her or invited her in, because well....she was very very strange.
I mean with all that praising going on, we were just certain THAT Girl was no fun at all. That Girl probably spent every waking moment on her knees. I will even admit to thinking, that is no way for a child to see his mother behave. My word, THAT Girl is going to turn off her son from religion forever.
No one really wanted to know THAT Girl.
Fast Forward fifteen years. I think of THAT Girl every once in a while and I smile. I think of her long brown hair flowing with the wind as she drove. I think of the constant joy and warm smile she was always willing to give. I think of her young son who always seemed to be dancing and happy. I think of the music that I would hear or a clip of one of her sermon's on tape. I think of how I never heard her gossip (as we had done about her). I thought of how, when her windows were open, her home always smelled inviting.
The reason that I often think of THAT girl, is now, fifteen years later, THAT girl is ME. I laugh as I drive singing at the top of my lungs to the praise music that fills my car. I get tears in my eyes as my two young daughters sing along with me. I will often purchase a sermon from our church that particularly touched me and listen to it again. In warmer days, I open up the windows to my home and the girls and I sing and dance to our Christian radio station. In church I am the crazy girl with her hands thrown up in the air when a song moves me to do so, or a loud Amen when the pastor or speaker really touches my heart. I am the one who would love to invite you in, if only you would let me.
I am sorry for the way that I treated that girl. I never even knew her name. I pray that she would know that she is thought about and loved by the person who would not give her the time of day fifteen years ago. My eyes are full of that wet stuff, as I think of the opportunity I threw away to get to know someone who was probably pretty amazing and how ashamed I am that my judgement of her was so harsh. I pray that one day I will get to see her again, and throw my arms around her and together we can sing praise to our Lord.
Maybe you have a THAT girl or guy in your life. Give them a chance. Let them share their love and joy with you. Because you never know when THAT girl will be YOU.