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45 Seconds Too Long?

After a long and arduous day at work I was met with the even longer and more difficult task of grocery shopping. Let me tell you a little bit about me and grocery shopping: We do not go well together. Which is weird because shopping is my third very favorite thing (behind macaroons and compliments). But when you add groceries into the mix, it becomes an entirely different animal. I can’t really point out what it is about grocery shopping that I find so offensive. Maybe it’s the endless lines at the register, maybe it’s the guilt involved in choosing the chocolate-covered cereal over its non chocolate counterpart, or maybe it’s the feeling of overwhelm when presented with endless options of yogurt. Whatever the reason, this truth stands: I abhor grocery shopping.

But I could sense that today would be different! I knew this the moment that I pulled into the parking lot and saw a homemade banner with two of the most beautiful words in the English language written on it: Bake Sale! It turns that a young girl (about the age of 7) and her mother were selling baked goods in front of the grocery store to benefit a local community charity. I couldn’t be happier to contribute to the cause.

Here’s how the transaction went:

Me: “Hi! I think that what you are doing is great! I’d like to buy some cookies, please.”

Kid: “Great! How many would you like?”

Me: (Amount redacted to protect the gluttonous)

Kid’s Mom: That’ll be $4.

I hand over a $10 bill to the little girl.

Kid’s Mom: Ok, Sara, she owes you $4, but gave you a $10 bill. How much are you supposed to give back?

Kid: Um…

The kid thought for about 45 seconds before giving the correct answer, which is both developmentally appropriate and quite impressive for a seven year old. I, on the other hand, had to hold myself back from saying, “Six! IT’S $6, KID! GET YOUR LIFE TOGETHER!”

I can’t say that I’m proud of what my thoughts were at that moment, but I do have to recognize that this event was an important one for me. It helped me to realize how little patience I possess. Was it really the worst thing in the world to have to wait 45 seconds? It was during that grocery trip that I asked God for the first time to help me be a little more patient with those around me. Because, after all, the old adage is true: good things come to those who wait. And in this case, that good thing was cookies.

Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love (Ephesians 4:3, NLT).

Jael Amador writes from New York, New York.

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About Jael Amador

Jael Amador

writes from New York, New York.

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