In the Holiday Spirit

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Kiki and I went to the market early this morning – okay, early for me, anyhow – to buy the items I need to do my baking today.  As we pulled out of the parking lot, there was an old guy with a sign "homeless, blah blah blah…"  I couldn’t really read it all.  Now, normally I just cruise on by… I do a lot of charitable things, but just tossing money to someone who is probably going to drink it up is just something I don’t care to do.  Call me a cynic.  When we owned our coffee house in the Seattle area, we had so many homeless coming in…we’d give them coffee, let them sleep in our big comfy chairs (if their smell didn’t offend patrons) but never gave money.  I’ve heard about every sob story there is, and generally the more detailed the tale, the bigger the lie.  I have offered food or to take them to a meal, and actually been turned down because they just wanted cash!  So, yeah, I’m a bit hardened to it.  I have taken Kiki to the park a few Sunday afternoons to help my church feed the homeless… it’s a good thing to do, and necessary, but it’s so sad when you see the same people month after month; the young ones who have addled their minds with drugs, the ones who obviously aren’t mentally right, the families with little kids… some can’t help it, obviously, but some truly seem like they just like the life, like the system, and that bugs me.   But there was something… I don’t know.  We drove by this old man, and I knew I had to give him something.  Alright, so I had just left the market, but I had stuff like, butter, powdered sugar, poppy seeds, canned pumpkin … not much in the way of meal-type items.  Still, I pulled in to the next parking lot, and dug thru my bags… I pulled out a bag of pretzels (about the only ‘ready to eat’ thing I had there) and Kiki had asked for a little net bag of those ‘baby bonbel’ cheeses, and she had eaten one but offered to give the rest away… so I turned the car around, drove back by him, and Kiki rolled down her window and offered up the pretzels and cheese… the smile that spread across the old man’s face was…so sweet.  Toothless, and kind.  He thanked her profusely, and said "God bless you, and have a wonderful Thanksgiving!"  As we drove away, he was tucking the items into his little box… Kiki said "Mom, that’s probably the best thing I’ve ever done."  It did feel good, and right.  I am so glad that today, I didn’t just drive by.    
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3 responses »

  1. Thanks for sharing that story! Children are so generous and they love the feeling they get when they help others.  The few times we have done that for others…they make big impressions.  You may not be Cathpolic but I love the Saint Therese.  She did small things for Jesus.  All those small things made a huge difference.  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! 

  2. Its always a blessing when we follow the Spirit\’s leading- what a gift you\’ve given you daughter. I strive to keep my son\’s heart (& mine) tender in this harsh world- I\’m too cynical as well- & remember that whatever we do, it is done for the Lord.
    Hope you all had a great holiday!

  3. Hi Ann,
    This entry made me smile! Remember when I gave my last $20 to the guy at Barnes and Nobles?  You told me I probably fell for a scam. Well God cannot fault either of us for our soft hearts and generosity!  I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.
    Love,
    Kathleen

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