I found a way to survive an airport on a Sunday.  Play Christmas music and go to the bathroom next to gate E 5. 
The plane landed and I had just enough time to, you know, do some business before I had to jot quickly to my  gate that would take me to beloved Rocky Top.  I put in my headphones as I walked in and there was the jolliest  woman with lashes that extended to the Atlantic and a smile that disarmed defensive and weary passengers.  I happened to be a physically weary passenger fighting a cold and longing for my sweet home on West Glenwood.  
She greeted me as if I had entered the pearly gates and I was her long lost daughter.  “Welcome!!! I am so glad you are here!”  

I stared and then I looked around to see who she was talking to and point to myself with a question mark in my eye.

“Yes! Welcome!”
Does she know I am in a bathroom in the Charlotte airport?  Does she know SHE is in a bathroom in the Charlotte airport?
She continues. “I want you to have a blessed day.  I am glad to see you.” 
I continue staring.  
“Be BLESSED everyone!” she booms in her beautifully deep voice with a side of sass and warmth.  

How does she do it?  How does she work a job of standing 5 feet away from constant crap (literally) and have such joy in her heart?   I did my business and gave her a smile and put my earbuds back in and the song, “Our God is With Us – Emmanuel” was playing.  Looking around at all the sizes, shapes, colors and temperaments of people walking by, I could sense His heart for this woman.  Many people were coming and going out of that room without giving her a second glance.  She was present, even if no one noticed or acknowledged her, but was anyone WITH her?

He is WITH us. 

He is WITH me. 

Many times I am the hustling woman through the airport with a frantic look on her face, just trying to get to the next place in hopes of it taking me home, the place I really want to be, but I miss his WITHness. He is always present, but presence can be true of God and be oblivious to me. Somewhere in there I miss the togetherness that is always mine for the taking. This WITHness is becoming my life calling and life longing.  To enjoy His WITH as I am WITH others – even in a crowded airport.   That woman in the bathroom by E5 was WITH those she served, with such presence and joy. God Bless her.  I think God enjoys her so much.  I hope she knows that that He is WITH her today.

Leave a Reply