By Cynthia Callan
Three years ago, my husband and I began walking at the park before work. At that time, I did not realize the many graces which would be received each day. The graces received went beyond the natural landscape and changing seasons; it also included the faces of God in the people I met.
When passing someone, we shared greetings; eventually learning names of some we met. Now our park friends add joy to the start of our day as we share laughter, smiles, and small talk along the way.
One of the regulars at the park is Linda. At first, we just offered a wave and a hello. One weekend morning, though, we stopped for conversation. Linda lives out of her car most days and nights throughout the year. Her circumstances began as a choice, responding to a call from God, she said. Even when I can only chat for a few minutes, I look forward to seeing her and getting to know her—her joys, her imperfections, her struggles, and her hopes. She feeds the birds and squirrels, and shares the message of Jesus to those she meets who wish to listen.
It would’ve been easy enough to wave and keep walking, yet if we had, an opportunity to meet Christ in someone else would have been missed. My life has been enriched by knowing Linda.
Cynthia is a member of the JUST Words editorial board, a Dominican Associate, and an accomplished amateur photographer who lives in Springfield, Ill.