In the past, I’ve never given money to people standing on the median of an intersection. Being a transit driver, I have seen hundreds of them and likely have judged them for good or bad.
Today I was driving with my boys and it was thirty-three degrees outside. We had just picked up a bag of fruit, using nearly the last of our grocery money for the week.
When I saw this man, sweating on the street, I felt the urge to offer him a piece of fruit. Was this urge from God, the universe or my conscience speaking, I don’t know. In just a second, a whole stream of thoughts went through my head. Some of these thoughts were, “What if I unroll the window and he tries to hurt us?”, what if he get’s mad because I don’t have any money”? “Why should I give to someone when we have such a hard time making ends meet”?
The calling was stronger than my fears. Then I thought about how I was sitting in an air conditioned vehicle, and although it’s been hard to make ends meet, peaches and apples are not a need so I have a lot to be grateful.
So I unrolled the window and offered a peach. I told him I didn’t have any money and he smiled the biggest smile, took the peach and thanked me as if I had given him a thousand dollars. The mother in me came to play, and I warned him to drink lots of water because it was really hot to be standing on the street. It really took me by surprise and I really wanted to help him more.
My son asked me if I had heard him say, “God bless you” and when I told him I hadn’t he asked me how I could have missed it. That is a great question, but I found myself stuck in a place of thought. Are we all trying to make ends meet and what is the difference between the man on the street and me? What if we all helped each other, could the world ever be that way?
Could this person decide he will give himself a second chance? It is hard to build your life from nothing, what would he need to make it happen? Most importantly, I find myself wondering, what can I do to help?
Feel free to share below ways that you have helped someone or how we can help without a lot of money to give.
Photo Credit to https://www.flickr.com/photos/littlebiglens/6687847529/