An Insight-ful Lesson

From afar, he looked like an ordinary boy of seven or eight, poking holes in a cone of yellow corn with a stick. But as he went on down the sidewalk, I crossed the street toward the spot where he’d been standing. It was then I noticed the stick was a white-tipped cane.

He walked alongside a woman—his mother?—tapping the cane from side to side as he walked away from me, tap, tap, tap, and as I stood there looking out at our little neighborhood pond alive with white and grey geese, mallards and coots, gulls and pelicans fishing, I felt hot tears come flooding forth as I realized one little boy who couldn’t see any of this and I felt ashamed.

I said aloud to God, “I am so ashamed to complain about my life—about anything I don’t have, or can’t do. I am so ashamed.” I stood looking at the corn with all the divots from his cane tip and the tears wouldn’t stop. Out on the muddy pond I watched colors blur into a wash of greys and whites and blacks and I thanked God for my life, for my sight, for the cold wind in my face and for the lesson he’d just provided.

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