Today we were on a moderately long walk, in the suffocatingly humid heat, and on our way back home stopped by to do a couple errands. It was mid-afternoon, way past nap times, and everyone was tired, hot, and cranky. But, we had to stop for another can of Cool Cobalt paint for the kids' train table, which we are building for them.
So, we stopped "quickly" at Home Depot to grab another can of paint, and waited as patiently as we could for the color to get mixed and shaken (this sounds quick and easy, but, I assure you, it seemed to take FOREVER!), and then were off to the checkout lanes. Halfway there, the children began to exhibit their overheated exhaustion through poor behavior choices, and I paused to deal with it. And was rudely interrupted by CRRRAAASSSSHHHHHH! My first reaction was severe irritation...not really sure why...until I realized what it was that had crashed: none other than our very own can of Cool Cobalt paint.
I stayed. Jack helped me flag down help, so that soon to our rescue came a very, incredibly kind older man, whom we now affectionately call "Ron from Home Depot." Creative, I know. (His name is Ron.) If I were an employee there, I think I would have been more than a tiny bit peeved about the gigantic mess we'd just made, not to mention the inventory wasted, but this kind man masterfully assuaged our profuse apologies and bad feelings. He said, "If this is the worst thing that happens today, I'm still having a good day!" Then he proceeded to tell us about worse things he'd experienced happening--like a 2-year-old going potty on a display toilet--and how that still wasn't really that terrible, after all. He tenderly took us over to get us another can of paint, and even treated us like he was sorry for making us wait so long all over again! He went out of his way to take care of our needs and to make us feel important in the doing so.
The moral of the story: It's profoundly amazing to be touched by such grace and kindness, especially in such an unexpected place. Thank you, Ron from Home Depot, for showing us Christ today. May you be blessed a hundred-fold!