Sunday, December 8, 2013

Dusty Rhodes In The Airport

Let me tell you about a very brief encounter I had with Dusty Rhoades, The American Dream, in the Charlotte Airport about 30 years ago.

In case you don't know, he used to be a big time professional wrestler.  He was on television about every week.  Dusty was a huge name in the business. 

Anyway, I spotted him walking towards the terminal I was leaving.  He had on a long fur coat that reached his ankles.  And he had one two gorgeous women with him.  One woman was on each of his huge arms.  All eyes were on him as he strutted confidently towards his destination.

After one of my buddies confirmed that it was indeed Dusty, I walked up to the giant of a man and asked, "Mr. Rhoades, can I please get your autograph?", as I held out a notebook and pen.  "Not right now, son," he said without even stopping.  And off he went with his expensive clothes, pretty women, and massive confidence.

As I look back on it, I can't be too down on good ole Dusty for that.  He probably was in a hurry to catch his flight.  And maybe he was thinking he would have to give every other kid in the airport an autograph if he gave me one.  So I guess it's understandable.

But the older I get, the more I realize we all need to slow down and make ourselves more available to people.  This big world we live in has a lot of hurt, loneliness, and fear in it.  If there is one way you and I can make it a little better, it is to make time for people and show them we care.  We can comfort the hurting, befriend the lonely, and protect the defenseless. 

I suppose Dusty gets a pass on refusing my autograph request.  After all, an autograph is not a life-or-death matter.  But it's not ok for us to spend our whole life hurrying past the hurting while only thinking about ourselves.

May we never say "Not right now" when someone really needs us.  Let us slow down and be there for those who are hurting.  That's what Jesus does for us.  And that's what we should do for each other. 

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