With my baby on my hip and my to-do list in my hand, I made my way briskly across the mall toward the supermarket. Time was slipping away and I wanted to get in and out as fast as I could. But as I neared the entrance, I locked eyes with an elderly gentleman who was smiling at my son. I felt compelled to stop and let him say hello to my little guy. It was only a few minutes and there were no meaningful words exchanged, but as I said goodbye he said something that both humbled and challenged me, “Thank you for giving me the gift of your time.”
As I reflected back on my day, it occurred to me that perhaps the single most important thing I had done was not to tick off my to-do list but to let myself be interrupted. The simple act of pausing and showing kindness had been a gift in someone else’s day that could not be measured—yet it was a moment that I could have far too easily missed had I rushed on my way.
Jesus did not allow Himself to get distracted by other people’s agendas and timetables, but He did allow Himself to be interrupted.
He let the children come when the disciples thought He had more important things to do (Mark 10:13-15).
He paused to acknowledge and encourage the woman who had been healed by touching His garment, even though He was on His way to a dying child (Mark 5:21-35).
He had compassion on the crowds who had gone ahead of Him and stopped to teach them even though He had intended to find a place of quiet and rest for Him and the disciples (Mark 6:30-34).
His life was punctuated with compassion, kindness, gentleness, and infinite patience and He invites us to follow in His footsteps.
Interruptions can be places of beauty and blessing. They can be the very moments that God infuses His grace into our lives and the lives of those around us if we will choose to make ourselves available to Him in the messiness and busyness of life.
What might happen if you allowed yourself to be interrupted today?