Showing Respect and Much More

God Bless America and Our Veterans

“Rise in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the Lord.” Leviticus 19:32

They announced “We are now inviting any passengers requiring special assistance to begin boarding at this time” and the entire herd moved towards the gate as always. However one gentleman, who clearly needed no help getting onto the plane, started pushing through the crowd towards the gate. I was like many others who looked at him wondering what he was up to.  It is always entertaining to watch people jockey for the best possible location to get on the plane before everyone else.

I could not have been more wrong!

I was barely close enough to the desk next to the gate to over hear that he was asking if he could trade seats with someone else (I am guilty of eavesdropping as well). The gate attendant complied with the man’s request and I watched in awe and embarrassment as he waved an older gentleman to the front. However it wasn’t only the man’s age that made me now admire this man for giving up his first class seat, but the fact that this elderly gentleman wore a World War II Veteran’s baseball cap.

As we boarded the plane and I headed for the back, I stopped to acknowledge the man who had given up his first class seat for this hero from a different generation (I wanted to thank the veteran as well but he was preoccupied as I passed). He told me it was nothing and that the veteran had been coming home to Philly to bury his wife.

While embarrassed by my initial thoughts and saddened by the additional information, I couldn’t help but feel honored to have witnessed something so special and rare.

Was he a Christian?

It really doesn’t matter what that man’s faith was a far as I am concerned. He did the right thing by showing this veteran the respect and compassion he deserved. I will be sure to include both of these men in my prayers tonight and I can only hope I will be more aware the next time an opportunity for me to help someone presents itself. While I know you don’t need to be a Christian to do the right thing, I do believe that if you are going to live a life that best glorifies God, we shouldn’t just do what is right but should actively look for those opportunities.

As runners, I believe these opportunities may not always be as obvious in our daily lives. However, don’t fool yourself as they probably occur more than you know. It might be as simple as a smile and saying good morning to a fellow runner on a trail that helps get their day off to a great start. Sometimes it’s those few words of encouragement you share to a friend while you train together or after they have really pushed themselves in a race.

I don’t want to trivialize the significant event at the airport with running. However, many of you know that I attribute running as a critical part of what has helped me strengthen my faith. As a result, I believe it also helped me better recognize what occurred today; not just someone doing the right thing but someone demonstrating a wonderful example of God’s Love.

God Bless you and America,


PS – Next time you see a serviceman or woman, make sure you thank them!

About rxnickrun

I am a Christian, Father of 4 wonderful children, Husband and Passionate Runner. I hope to help others experience that running can be a powerful approach to strengthen their Faith and improve their fitness.
This entry was posted in Doing our best, Leviticus, Prayer and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Showing Respect and Much More

  1. Lurleen Worthington says:

    Once again, thank you for your words of encouragement. It’s always meaningful to open up your website and read on…..

    Also wanted you to know that Chance and I are registered for the Broad Street Run. We need all the encouragement we can get with training!

  2. cchristens says:

    Thank you so much for this post. I am trying my best to leave the judgement business to God; I’m simply not qualified. I’m sure I would of had the same irritation as he pushed his way to the front of the line. It is so difficult to drop our pride. Why should I care, even if he was selfish? Someone’s actions cannot affect my honoring of God, unless I allow it. I’ve heard a couple times over the past few days; meekness is strength restrained. It is not weakness. Meekness and humility before our Father is by far the greatest strength imaginable.

  3. elisariva says:

    Thank you for sharing! I try to thank service men and women when I see them. Sometimes I am too choked up to speak. And you are right about encouraging others – sharing a smile or kind word on a run just may change another person’s day for the good and who knows where they are headed or who they will see.

  4. Tara B. says:

    “I attribute running as a critical part of what has helped me strengthen my faith.”

    I enjoyed reading about your experience. Today as I go about my day, I’m going to look for ways just to bless someone, even if its just by a smile or hello 🙂 It’s what you said at the end that intrigued me, because I just wrote a blog and mentioned that it seems like my spiritual life is improving as I dive deeper into this running experience. I couldn’t quite figure out the correlation between the two except that I’m doing something to take care of Gods temple; and well, LIFE is just like a RUN! I’ll be checking in to read more of your posts, and thanks for checking out mine! 🙂

    • rxnickrun says:

      Thanks Tara! It has been amazing to me how interconnected my physical and spiritual life have become. It’s clear to me that 1+1 = 5 when I put these two aspects of my life together. Hope you have a great day and help someone else have one as well!

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