The man walking by me, slightly bedraggled and beard unkempt, cleared his throat, blew his nose and I watched in horror as whatever irritated his nostrils landed close to my feet. “Hey,” I shouted, “That nearly fell on my feet!”
“It didn’t!” said the man as he prepared for his next salvo. I walked on, furious, and muttered to myself, about what levels the city had reached and how I was now forced to walk with such as these, when suddenly a thought struck me, what had the good Lord done when he came across such crude behavior?
What did the Lord do, when he came to live on earth, when he first faced the stink of the manger he was born in, I mean, those Christmas cribs they make are ever so sweet, but I doubt, cattle in a cattle shed, can avoid mucking up their homes, making I’m sure, bedroom and bathroom look like one big mess.
What did the Lord do?
What did he do, when Peter the fisherman, who he must have sat next to and eaten with, day after day, belched loudly, burped even more loudly and with thick fingers opened his Colgateless mouth and pulled out obstinate fish bone, and placed it next to the Lord’s plate!
Did the Lord grimace? Did Jesus think with remorse that up there in heaven he had polite, courteous angels next to him, with, “Will you please pass the soup Lord?”
But there’s no word, is there, in the scriptures of the Lord rebuking anyone for their manners? He accepted people as they were. I doubt there was a moment when his mother felt that the cow at the manger needed a scrubbing, or the sheep a shearing, because her little baby had looked at these animals with a horrified look. He didn’t. And the cattle mooed, the sheep bleated, John, his favourite disciple must have given a little burp and Peter or St Peter as he later was called, belched.
I looked up from my thoughts as I saw same man walking dangerously close to me, he cleared his throat, he blew his nose and looked at me, then saw my smile.
“What?” he gurgled.
“If the good Lord didn’t react who am I to?” I whispered.
He didn’t spit, but walked by looking puzzled. Somewhere up, I imagined the good Lord smiling and remembering Peter and his belch..!
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