So I’m sitting on a the second of two red eye flights right now with my three very tired/grumpy children as we travel from Maui to Nashville. I’m so tired I can’t see straight.
I know what you’re thinking… boo hoo right? Haha! I don’t blame you.
But as we fly home, I’m reflecting on our trip… the good, the great, the exhausting, the tantrums (by both kids and parents #facepalm) and the beautiful.
One moment in particular that I keep thinking about is the night we met Moses, the man that gave my daughter A five minute harp that changed everything.
It was a typical night on Front Street in Lahaina. We’d just enjoyed a famous Ululani Shave Ice and were almost back to the house when came upon a man.
Just to paint a picture for you, Front street in Lahaina is one of my favorite places. It’s a quaint little road lined with colorful shops and restaurants, all filled with the similar island wares and/or claiming to have the best food/treats.
People are friendly and it’s typically some what busy, but not so busy that you feel like you can’t breathe.
There’s a ginormous banyan tree on one end of the street that spans an entire block on it’s own! Many artistic types spend their days/nights here.
Front street is also home to many who are homeless and some play music to try and make a few bucks. It all adds the the ambiance of Front Street, but it’s so common that, sadly, we hardly notice anymore.
Now, at first I’ll admit that I don’t really see him…. The man I mean. Well, I see him… but I don’t “SEE” him. See what what saying?
He’s sitting on the corner of a rock wall playing a small harp.
We smile as we begin to pass, going on about our night as he says sweetly to my daughter? “Do you want to play?”
After a pause, she reluctantly nods. I’ll admit, I’m SHOCKED! My daughters have major stranger danger and usually give any unknown human who speaks to them major stink eye!
But my daughter proceeds to take a seat in his spot and he begins giving her a 5 minute harp lesson.
My daughter is elated! She’s loving every moment and, after we thank him and gave him a few dollars, I peel her away and we begin walking home.
I make it about 7 steps when I have a small subtle feeling that I should go back. I’ve had this feeling before and later regretted it when I didn’t act on it.
So, before I take the easy way out and change my mind, I turn around and go back.
I ask “What was your name?” He smiles and replies, “Moses.”
I say, “My name is Chelsey. It’s so nice to meet you Moses. Thank you so much for doing that. You made her day.”
His face lights up as he said “Oh, thank you. That was wonderful. God bless you.”
We shake hands and part ways and I rejoin my family.
Now, is asking his name a ground breaking thing? No! Could I have done more? Yes. I probably should have.
But as we walk home that night I think about all the other musicians and artists we passed just that night alone. should have taken a moment to say “Hey, I see you. I appreciate you!”
On the flip side, I distinctly remember a time when I passed a young woman on the street who was crying… and I didn’t say anything! I still have her face burned into my mind and I wish I would have. Who knows if a minute of my time would have helped her or not. Maybe it would have annoyed her. Even so, I wish I would have at least tried.
Here’s the deal, we all want to now we are seen! We all want to mean something to someone(s) while we live on this earth because then we feel important!
But sometimes we are so focused on the fact that WE are not feeling seen or noticed or appreciated that we forget to see and notice and appreciate!
And it doesn’t take much! I believe a small and seemingly insignificant gesture can go a very very long way!
Perhaps is brings a little light into someones day. Or perhaps it helps a person pause long enough to decide that they will stick around on this earth a little longer.
I’ve also learned that life gets really good when we learn to look outside of ourselves and take the time to love others! This is my experience with Moses. Did I do much? No. But I’ll never forget him and, because of our small interaction, I want to be better. For that, I will always be thankful for that five minute harp lesson.
I need to do better at this and I need to take the time to see more people who’s paths I cross.
It’s like a friend of mine once said… “After all, we are all just walking each other home.”
Isn’t that the truth. Whether it’s for a lifetime or a few moments, we all cross paths with many people and, if we choose, we walk with those people for a certain amount of time. We are walking each other home… so how are we going to do it?
Will we do it by taking the easy way out and ignoring those around us? Or will we try a little more each day to see those around and let them know we see them.
Will we do it by saying something hurtful from behind a keyboard. Or will we express love and kindness and discuss ideas instead of differences?
Will we do it by belittling and focusing on each others weaknesses? Or by focusing on our efforts and strengths.
Oh man, I need to do better and I hope I can do right by those around me, therefore I want to SEE people!
Do you have a similar experience? I’d love to hear it!
Oh, and if you’re on Front Street in Lahaina and you see my friend Moses playing his harp, stop and have a five minute harp lesson. Then give him a few dollars and tell him his friend Chelsey Says hello!