The other day after lunch I drove through a beautiful Austin neighborhood called Hyde Park. The trees slouch over the street and muffle the sounds of the rest of the world. I always lower my windows to feel the silence of the place. The afternoon had a nice breeze and the sun was hot.
There is a fire station in an old brick building across from the post office; just two garage doors and a small office. I pulled up to the stop sign next to the station and saw a guy about my age guiding a boy around a fire truck. The boy must have been about six or seven and he had a walking stick. He wore Incredible Hulk sunglasses. I sat there for a minute and watched as the man led the boy around the truck telling him which parts where which; taking the boy's hand and placing it on the tires, the intake valves, the hose. He then picked him up and stood him on the big rear diamond plated bumper. The boy touched the red side of the fire truck and pulled his hand back, shaking it, saying: "Hot, hot, hot."
Who knows the details of relationship between the two of them - but isn't that a beautiful scene? I imagine this guy thinking to himself: "Fire trucks were a big deal to me when I was a kid. I want to help this boy paint a picture in his mind of what fire trucks look like. Little boys need to know these things."
What important work it is to help others see things they've never seen before. What a beautiful opportunity it is to guide people to new ways of understanding. We get to do that - if only we choose to think about it that way.