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Thursday, January 8, 2009

I See Live People. . . All the Time

I love movies with a surprise ending. Thus, I loved The Sixth Sense. I especially liked the line, "I see dead people . . . all the time." It is given with such sincerity that I, too, believed he had seen dead people.

I see dead people, too. I am a pastor. I do lots of funerals. I see dead people all the time. They are dead because they are no longer able to respond through their bodies. They are not dead because they no longer exist. This is a distinction that most people miss.

I suppose we find the idea of talking to people who have died fascinating. We certainly have enough movies and tv shows whose main theme is talking with the dead. I have watched a few of these. They do nothing for me.

I was riding my bike to work this morning and noticed how many people never saw me. I am alive and moving. I am able to respond to stimuli. They made right turns in front of me. I have a light that flashes so that I will be noticed. It did no good. They never saw me even when they looked directly at me.

I stopped in a gas station to get a candy bar a few weeks ago. I didn't say a thing to the clerk. She told me how much and I paid. She said, "You sure talk a lot." Of course , she was saying this facetiously. (The truth is I do talk a lot; just not on this day.) Her real message to me was, "You haven't seen me!" I got the message, smiled and apologized. Everyone should be seen.

How many times have I gone into an airport or a mall and never seen any of the people there? How can I tell them that they matter to God when I haven't let them matter to me?

Now, I see live people. I see the teenagers walking through the mall with nothing to do but hoping that something will happen. I see the men rushing in to buy something as quickly as possible so they can leave. I see women spending the day buying things that they will probably bring back tomorrow. I see children hounding their parents to get an ice cream or go to the play area. Each of these people matter a great deal to God. I don't meet many of them but I do say some small prayers for God's blessings upon them. I don't have to know what that will be. God knows what they need. I just want to know that since God loves them greatly, that I have agreed with God for His blessings upon them.

You know, you can see a lot of people if you just look. I see live people . . . all the time.

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