Blog – 5-24-17
Last Friday, at the end of a rainy, dreary week I headed off in the rain to Cherokee to perform at a nursing home. I usually love singing at nursing homes because I get the opportunity to sing old songs I rarely perform elsewhere, and I love the looks of remembrance on the residents’ faces. But to be honest, the gloomy weather was starting to steal my joy.
As I unloaded in the rain up a very long sidewalk, four trips in all, I started getting a little dose of grumpy in my spirit. I was freezing, my hair was ruined, it’s Friday and I’m tired, but as they say, the show must go on!
The dining room was starting to fill, and the staff had created an adorable backdrop for the “stage.” Snacks were being prepared, and the room started filling up. This was a big deal for the residents, and their excitement started chasing away my grumpiness. God’s gentle voice reminded me that I was there to bless these people. It wasn’t about me. It was 100 percent about them.
With a renewed passion to touch their souls and add some joy to their day, I began singing an old country song by Hank Williams, one of my favorites. They went nuts. After the second song, a man in a wheelchair right by the front very loudly proclaimed, “That was great, Sweetheart!” I smiled. He called me sweetheart and complimented me after almost every song after that.
A few songs later, another man started raising his hand when I got done singing and either told me a quick story about the song or requested another song. It was a hoot! He was SO into the music.
A sweet lady in the back who I knew had dementia and a very limited vocabulary sang every line of almost every song.
Another woman was dancing in her wheelchair and clapping along with a huge smile on her face. I could tell she had some moves in her day! (If you look closely at the picture up above, she’s the lady with the red shirt in the upper right who has her hands up in the air!)
As I witnessed the joy the music was bringing them, my soul started soaring. It was one of the most enjoyable concerts I have done in a very long time!
After the show, I went around to all that I could and gave them handshakes and hugs and thanked them for being there. They were all so sweet. One man, who was flirting with me just a little bit, told me, “I hope they have you come back. You sing really good and you’re really pretty!” John has some competition (wink wink)!
Another woman told me she used to sing with her sister and what wonderful memories she had of those times. Then she looked at me with all sincerity and said, “Honey, don’t ever quit singing.”
I think I will take her advice.
As I loaded up my car, it’s funny how the rain didn’t bother me a bit. I had a smile on my face and contentment in my heart. I realized again that the one who blesses gets blessed.
That’s the beauty of blessing. The more we bless others, the more we are blessed. Jesus said:
“Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:40
How is God calling you to serve?
What is pulling at your heart?
Where is God asking you to bless others?
I know our schedules are crazy busy, I know most of us feel stretched to the absolute limit, but I encourage you to take Matthew 25:40 to heart. Go out and bless others. Give your talent and time to the forgotten, the lonely, people on the margins. Share God’s love with your neighbor.
You will be the hands and feet of Jesus in action…and in the process, you will be blessed.
Thank you, Father, for your gentle reminder that the one who blesses gets blessed!
Hugs and love,