Words and Deeds

I was ashamed of myself yesterday. But my spouse rescued me, and for that I am grateful.

I talk a lot about taking care of others, living unselfishly, and trying to do the right thing. But it’s one thing to talk about it, and a completely different thing to live it. Life has a funny way of reminding you of that.

We were leaving my youngest son’s hockey game, and in a hurry. We only had 45 minutes to drive home, cook an appetizer, and get to some friends’ house for a gathering. As we were getting into our car, a man parked across from us said, “Excuse me, sir; if you’re not in too much of a hurry, could you help me get my car started?” Of course, I was in a hurry, and he gave me the perfect opening. I said, “Actually, we do have to be somewhere.” Here’s where my wife saved me. She said, “Michael! We have time.” And it was like a kick in the pants. I was the hypocrite I always rail about! Here was a chance to – with minimal effort – help someone in need, and I was finding an excuse not to.

After that it was easy. We opened hoods, clamped cables, started vehicles, and were both off within five minutes. And I had a big slice of humble pie. I was again reminded – for the 96,765th time – that words are far easier than deeds. Being the person I think I am and want to be is far more difficult than just talking about it. We must constantly be vigilant against letting our selfish selves dominate our better selves.

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