I just remembered an unusual thing that happened to me a few years ago. I spoke casually with a woman who served tables at a restaurant I frequented. We knew each other by first name only, but usually chatted for a few minutes each time I dined there.
One day, she asked me, “Does your dad or say..uncle goes to music bars frequently ?”
‘Oh that’s my uncle Axe..’ I thought. I nodded yes.
She pressed on. “Does he play guitar?”
When I said that he does, she asked if he played in this local folk club the previous week at a particular boulevard. Again, I answered, “Yes.”
“I thought so,” she smiled. “I saw him and thought he must be your dad or your uncle.”
Since there were tens of thousands of men who play guitar in folk clubs in the city, I was amazed and exclaimed, “I didn’t know he looked that much like me!”
“Oh, I didn’t see his face that clearly,” she said smiling as if she were keeping a secret.
“Then how did you know he was that related to me?” Now I was puzzled.
“I was just sitting at a table in that club, and I saw this guy in his 40’s or 50’s wearing a cap walking towards the stage to play with his mates. He walks like you.”
Walks like me? Now I was curious. How do I walk? Since I’m doing the walking, I don’t notice how I look to others. Maybe I could watch him amble around to get an idea.
That said, how we walk down a street and how we walk through life are very different things. Perhaps I can’t help how I walk down a street, but I want to be intentional about how I walk through life.
Through life, I want to walk gently. I want to treat all of life – the earth and its people – with reverence. I want to remove my shoes in the presence of holy ground. As much as possible, I want to walk in peace.
I want to walk lightly, even joyfully, through whatever days I am given. I want to laugh easily. I want to step carefully in and out of people’s lives and relationships. I don’t want to tread any heavier than necessary.
And throughout life, I think I would like to walk with more humility and less anger, more love and less fear. I want to walk confidently, but without arrogance. I want to walk in deep appreciation. I want to be genuinely thankful for life’s extravagant, yet simple. Precious gifts would be a star-splattered night sky or a hot drink on an ice-cold day.
If life is a journey, then how I make that journey is important. How I walk through life.
But still I wonder how I look when I walk down a street.