Recently I went to the store with a friend of mine.  It was busy, and the parking lot was reasonably full, but by a stroke of luck we found a parking spot right in front of the store.  I excitedly pointed to the spot, but my friend just kept driving and took the next empty spot further down the row.  I was righteously miffed as we walked by the spot, which was now filled and the driver already in the store.  I asked my friend, why didn’t he take this wonderful parking spot that luck had given us?

My friend kept walking, but matter-of-factly said that he was excited when he saw the empty parking spot, and wanted to take it.  But he had been blessed that he could still walk well, and he really didn’t need to park so close.  And besides, he now had the joy of knowing that he had given the spot to someone else.  He did not know the person parked there, nor did that person know of his sacrifice.  And he would have been silent about it if I had not asked, so he did not give up the parking spot to garner my respect and admiration, though he had gained both.  And while many reading this will consider my friend naïve and a fool, for the first time in my life I thought I understood Christian Charity.

I think we would all be happier and we would be a better nation if we could find the joy in giving up the parking spot.