March 9

Written by Bill Grandi on March 9th, 2023

A man wearing jeans, a T-shirt, and a baseball cap positioned himself against a wall beside a trash can at the Metro station in Washington, D.C. He pulled out a violin and began to play. In the next 43 minutes, as he performed six classical pieces, 1097 people passed by, ignoring him.

No one knew it, but the man playing the Metro was Joshua Bell, one of the finest classical musicians in the world, playing some of the most elegant music ever written on a $3.5 million Stradivarius. But no crowd gathered for the virtuoso. “It was a strange feeling, that people were actually ignoring me,” Bell said.

When I read that story this morning, a song came to my mind: “This is for all the lonely people, thinking that life has passed them by.” (“Lonely People” by America-1971)

Our world is filled with hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of people who are depicted by the story and the song: they go through life unnoticed, uncared for…lonely. They feel as though life and love has passed them by.

The truth is they aren’t necessarily the pandhandler or the homeless. They could work with you. They could play sports with you. They could be your neighbor. They could even be in your house living with you. Then again, it could be you.

There is a commercial of an anti-depressant where the people are shown interacting, but sad, all the while they hold a smiley face on a stick in front of them. That is the way a lot of people are. Hold up a false face so you don’t see what they are really like.

Challenge for today: keep your eyes open for lonely people. They may put up a false front so you may have to look hard. Don’t let someone be lonely today. Don’t let you be lonely today. Open up to someone. Be a friend. Seek a friend. EVERYONE MATTERS.


6 Comments so far ↓

  1. Ryan S. says:

    There are times where I am that lonely person… by choice. The mask goes up and immediately becomes a facade in an attempt to prevent getting to know someone more. In an attempt to prevent life from getting messy. In an attempt to conceal what I perceive as my true self. — That said, this isn’t about myself at the moment, you post is about the other lonely people. Since I have been there, I know. It takes courage to reach out. It takes time to reach out. It takes effort to reach out… An probably most importantly, it takes vulnerability to reach out. Until you are ready to be vulnerable with someone else, they may not reciprocate.

    Good reminder to keep our eyes, ears, and most importantly, our hearts open as we interact with those around us.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      You make a good point Ryan. Different personalities will react and reach out differently. You are also right in that it takes effort and courage to reach out. But we do need to keep our eyes, ears, and hearts open.

  2. gail says:

    It’s amazing what God can do with just a smile and a kind word to someone you do not know. When we just stop and take the time to engage with someone just to let them know, hey I see you, and I want to say hello and wish you well. It’s the small things in life that God can take and use in big ways. You may never know what small piece of the puzzle, God needs you to be, so that His bigger puzzle fits together. All He asks is for us to be available and shine His light, be aware of the opportunities that He gives us to do just that.

  3. Lonely or not, everyone matters. I hope and pray we can remember that as we go through our day.
    Blessings, Bill!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      it is a prayer of mine almost daily Martha. Maybe not specifically prayed for but in many other types of words I want that to be my guiding light.