Spiritual Practice


Pam Bostwick

Our church holds a Communion service at a local nursing home. In the few minutes before the service, I decided to visit Verna, a resident who didn’t have any family or visitors. I approached Verna’s room and noticed her standing in the hallway. Before I could reach her, she had latched onto the arm of a teenage boy from our church. She looked up into his face and cried, “David, my David, you have come to see me.”

[Jesus said,] “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
John 13:35 (NRSV)

The young man stopped. He didn’t ignore her or give her an awkward pat on the shoulder. He didn’t tell her that he was not her David. Instead, he smiled down at her, gently put his arms around her, held her tightly, and kissed her on the cheek as he would his own mother. While he carefully walked down the hall with his arm around her, I heard her exclaim again, “Oh, David! My David!”

Tears filled my eyes as I witnessed such a display of unconditional love. I was touched by the young man’s sensitivity and concern. He didn’t know Verna, but he knew her need and her loneliness. His example taught me what it means to care for another human being.


5-SECOND PRAYER: God, help me to know when another person needs my love. Amen.

—from devozine (November/December 2014). Copyright © 2014 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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