I was in the middle of working on four PowerPoint decks and just finished stress-chowing on a few pieces of chocolate. My hands felt tired and filthy — it might’ve been the slightly humid day, or maybe they were just overworked. I just knew I had to take a break and wash them.
At the sink, the water was refreshing, renewing. The restroom was empty, and my mind started to wander. The motion-activated soap dispenser and faucet made me realize how many hands in this world are filthy with few opportunities to get clean. I felt spoiled. Spoiled because of clean hands.
I have a habit of wiping down the counter before throwing my hand towels away. This afternoon, the shimmering granite countertop stood out as a luxury. We have a taste for nice things in this country. But not everyone will see a granite countertop, and certainly not the majority of those in third world countries. Not even those in more developed countries.
I thought of the bloodshed and people in Egypt. I thought of their hands, then my thoughts switched to the figurative washing of hands.
I thought of our own citizens in need.
I thought of children who may never know cleanliness or a restroom they can use without having to fight for their time in it.
My hands were clean but my heart was heavy.
It all made me so thankful for the things we take for granted every day. Automatic faucets. Water on demand. Cleanliness on demand. We are privileged and blessed to have the things we have. We are lucky to have regular access to those things. May we appreciate them fully, honor the resources and waste not out of respect for those who have not.