I was on a trip last week. Over 13,000 kms travelled. I am now jet lagged and recovering.
We were at a conference. On the first day, my colleague and I went to the conference venue and found ourselves in a small room that seated around 30 people. My friend showed me a woman seated there at a table, alone , with her books and her phone. She told me that woman( Diane) was from our place, from a neighboring university. But she told me she was perhaps not very friendly as she had not “liked” one of her posts on Facebook and the only reason she could see why was that she recognized that her name was Arab and didn’t want to communicate with Arabs. Talk of pre-judgment. I told my friend- lets just go and say ” hello” and then see what happens- if the woman wanted to talk we could continue, if not, we could move on.
Together we said ” Hello” and introduced ourselves. She knew my friend, having seen her at meetings before but they had never talked. Diane shook hands with both of us and then she said a surprising thing, ” lets find a place to sit together”.
So we looked around and found three seats to sit together. And for the rest of the conference we were together.
Diane was one of the best friends I made- even though for a short duration. She was kind, sweet, cheerful, helpful, knew how to get in and out of situations, young, friendly and generally the good soul.
Talking to her was one of my personal “tabernacles”. As you might know, I am shy and retiring by nature- if someone doesn’t talk to me, I don’t talk. I would rather be a listener than a talker. But this one time, I was driven to make the first move and talk to Diane. I am reading a book where the author says, he had his defining moment of the existence and presence of God, while sitting on the ” Flattop mountain” in Colorado, as a 11 year old. This was mine. I knew God had sent an angel to watch over both me and my friend during our conference and angel she was.
All I can say is that God watches out for us even in the most mundane of situations. He can convert a tongue- tied 48 year old into a conversationalist, making the first move and the rewards were great.