They drove in silence to the hospice.
Orderlies helped the woman out of the cab. The cab door shut. It was the sound of the closing of a life.
The driver didn’t pick up any more passengers that shift. He drove aimlessly, lost in thought.
He didn’t think that he could have done anything more important in his life than drive the old woman to hospice.
Before you read my reflection below, please take a few minutes to read the full text of the article above. It’s sad, poignant, and more than a little depressing.
So why do I want you to read it?
Because it’s also an excellent example of “sacred text.”
I don’t know if the story is “real”, and it doesn’t matter.
By that I mean that I don’t know if a cabbie ever really picked up an elderly woman, took her on a last cab ride to her old haunts, and then delivered her to a hospice where she ended her days. If it is “real”, I don’t know if he then “drove aimlessly, lost in thought.”
It doesn’t matter.
Sacred text, whether “biblical” or from any other source, isn’t sacred because it’s “history.”
It’s sacred because of what it touches within us and the response it calls us to make.
The story of the cabbie is in the same vein as the story of the Good Samaritan. It pulls us into the understanding that we are not defined by our nationality or our gender or our religion … or our age.
We’re defined, as Christians and as people of faith, by how we act toward each other and the world.
May we, like that cabbie, make the definition a good one.