A: The Post Office

Q: Where have you received God’s grace and mercy today?


Quite often we get wrapped up in whatever the day has in store for us:  things to accomplish, places to go, people with whom we will interact…the list could go on and on (and usually, whether we like it or not, DOES).  And, for most of us, we operate at a fairly quick pace, GOING almost all day.  Or, there are moments when the world may seem to be conspiring against us.  When it rains, it pours is the old saying.


With everything that happens in our over-scheduled lives, missing where God has given us a bit of grace and mercy could happen very easily.  Knowing that those moments of grace and mercy exist, even when the downpour of life showers us, is difficult.  Maybe we don’t expect God’s grace, or feel like we are deserving of that divine love.  Maybe seeing the unfortunate things, the badness of the world is far easier (and, watch any evening news program) to detect.


Cell phone in the washing machine.  Going to be THAT kind of a day?  Lovely.

Cell phone in the washing machine. Going to be THAT kind of a day? Lovely.


Yet, I am convinced that God’s love, grace, and presence are around us everywhere.  Seeing those moments, even if tiny and fleeting, is one of the keys to living a more God-centered and joy-filled life, I’ve come to find.


Case in point:  I was standing in a long line at the Friendship Heights post office yesterday around lunch time: full of people, most of them agitated.  I needed to purchase a padded envelope and then tape the address label (which was full of codes and a bar code) to the envelope.  Did I remember to bring the tape with me?  Nope.  Did the post

Long line at Christmastime at the U.S. Post Office at Colonie, NY

Long line at Christmastime at the U.S. Post Office at Colonie, NY.

office have tape I could buy?  Not that I could see anywhere.  Awesome.  The rather gruff older gentleman behind the counter looked at me exasperatedly as I asked if he had any tape.  After digging around behind the counter, while grumbling about the fact that they don’t hardly ever HAVE clear tape and that they don’t ever just GIVE people tape…they SELL people tape, miraculously he found an old roll that contained just enough for my address label.  Perfect!  He rang me up and the total came to $18.02.  Did I have two pennies?  Nope; not on me.  Looking at the line and mumbling about how someone had given him some change when he was at the grocery store last week when he needed three cents, he rummaged around in his pants pocket and produced two pennies.  Excellent!  Go God!  I thanked the man for all his help and walked out a happy camper.


Now, things could have gone differently; the guy behind the counter didn’t have to help me out…but he did.


Sometimes God’s grace and love…and mercy come in small doses.  Sometimes God shows up in very small ways.   If we aren’t looking for them they can be glossed over or explained away: he was just being nice…he was only doing that because he didn’t want to have to count out the 98 cents in change.  OR, we can look and see God at work and alive around us all of the time–in big ways, and in small ways.


Hooray for God’s grace, love and mercy.   May we always be on the lookout and recognize them when they are bestowed upon us.


In Christ’s name,



About matthewhanisian

Associate Rector at St. Alban's Episcopal Church, Washington, D.C.
This entry was posted in The Rev. Matthew R. Hanisian. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s