Time and Time again I question if what I am doing really matters.
Like many other days during the week I stopped under a red light to see an african american man with a sign held up. The sign was hand written, asking for money, spare change, or anything I’d be willing to give or to help support him because he was homeless. He walked pass my car and avoided eye contact with me. His clothes still looked slightly dingy. He had on a North Face black jacket, black sweats and I didn’t look at his shoes. It took me back to another even that happened just a few days ago.
On Sunday a man came into our church and sat for a few minuets.we had a speaker talking about his history traveling the states and talking about his struggles who was speaking creole. As the man walked from the back of the auditorium and walked towards the front of the room, you couldn’t help but stop and watch to see what he was going to do. He was a familiar face – meaning that we’d seen him before -he’s come by several times to ask for money and food. If you didn’t see him walk in you could smell him as he reached the front chairs and grabbed a seat – he reeked of urine. His pants were a dirty grey looking color, his jacket was a worn out navy blue colored jacket. He sat for about five minuets and then stood up and stared and everyone, then he did the universal sign that people have come to know – he put his hands out to ask for money. The man was drooling, and couldn’t walk straight with picking up his feet.
yes everyone in the room felt uncomfortable but then I thought – at any given moment this could be one of us. Standing in the street palms up, asking for money, food, shelter, a job, asking out of despair to hopefully get something to survive into the next day. We believe family and friends would help us out – but for how long?
Not before long, the person on the microphone switched to speaking english and he said, “No body owes you that”. and he repeated it. My heart shattered into pieces. This is not the love we are asked to share amongst one another.
Someone handed the man five dollars, and began to walk him out the doors.
Anytime I see someone in a situation like this I always wonder, “how did you end up here, do you want something better for yourself, and what would you like to achieve out of life?” I often wonder what the world would look like if there were no sicknesses, illnesses, or evil desires and behaviours.
I’ve wanted to walk up to people and rather than pay just for a meal to sit and listen to their stories and help them get the real help they need, the right support systems, or to even be cleaned up!
In high school I ran track and field and my coach always pulled down the window and spoke to the person before giving them anything. If they showed irritation and walked away they missed out on money and a meal.
Sadly (times two) there were children and young adults that witnessed what happened. And this was in a church. I can’t help but wonder what are we teaching these young adults?
We I have to do better and know that:
- our (my) silence speaks louder than words.
- it could be you (me) in that same position given the right circumstances.
it’s true, nobody owe’s you that. It’s probably why society is where it is today – full of corruption, greed, and individualists. This world could be so much greater, and I can’t wait for that time.
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