Thursday, November 30, 2006

A Good Deed and A Heavy Heart

Today, Merry and I were trying to kill time while waiting for Kelsey to get out of school. We went into a Dollar General store (which I NEVER go into) and witnessed something very sad.
I noticed a pretty rough looking man in line ahead of me, and was keeping Merry close and hanging onto my purse. You know, you never know when a strange person might try to snag your kid or your purse. I was being paranoid.
I was watching Merry out of the corner of my eye, and watching the man at the same time. I noticed that he purchased two cans of stew, and that was it.
After we checked out, I gathered our stuff and Merry and we went out into the cold, rainy day.
I saw the man, standing behind the stack of carts. He used something to open the one of the cans of stew and started eating it immediately!
I realized he was homeless, and it broke my heart. This guy was only in his mid-forties or so, and so hungry that he pried open a can and wolfed it down in the time it took me to walk to my car and buckle Merry in.
I watched as he took off his trench coat, slung the bag with his remaining can of stew over his arm, and replaced his coat. How awful it must be to have to protect your FOOD like that!
I had already told Merry that I would get her a milkshake from McDonald's, so we drove over there. I purchased the milkshake and a ten dollar gift card. I prayed, "God, if its safe, let me find that man so I can give him this gift card." Trust me, I ONLY do things like this if I feel it is a safe situation!
Merry and I drove around the strip mall, and I finally spotted the man sitting under the awning of a store. There was a young girl sitting a few feet away from him, having a smoke, so I took that as a "yes" from God.
I stopped my car and got out.
I said, "Excuse me, sir, this is for you." He looked at me incredulously.
"What's that for?" he asked me.
"I wanted you to be able to buy yourself a meal or two." I handed him the card.
"Why did you do that?" he asked.
"Because I could, " I replied. "God bless you."
As I walked away, he called out, "Thank you, ma'am."
My heart hurt for that man, but I know that that was all I could do for him.
Merry asked me about the card I gave him and I told her that sometimes people don't have everything they need, and we should help them if we can.
I told her we would pray for that man, and she was happy to do so.
I hope that I can teach my children to display the true Christmas spirit of giving.

This Christmas, if the opportunity arises for you to help someone less fortunate, do so, if at all possible.
That is the true spirit of Christmas. That is what Jesus would do.

Kendra

16 comments:

Judy said...

Wow, Kendra. That gave me chills to read that.

Thanks for setting such a loving, wonderful example for your girls...perhaps I can pry one of them away from you to marry one of my boys? Good kids are hard to find!

Laura said...

That just warmed my heart! I bet that man was just bowled over by your generousity! :) It's so nice to be able to make a difference in someone's life who could really use it, once in awhile.
I remember one time a few years ago when my mom & I were going to WalMart. There was a family out in front in a van with a sign asking for help. My mom was going to just walk by but I asked her if we could help them. So, the mother came inside with us and my mom & I helped her pick out $40 worth of groceries. They had cruised into town on fumes and were stranded because their car broke down before they got to their destination. The woman cried after we helped her load the groceries into the van. She was so appreciative...

Anonymous said...

You have such a good heart! Thank God for people like you! You are waht Christians should be: Giving and loving without judgment! Sis. Gloria

Cliff Morrow said...

Good job Kendra. Thank you for caring. We have a local food pantry that I try to support on a regular basis but it becomes critical to do so when the chilly winds start to blow. Blessings on you for doing that. Also I was over to your Dad's blog. I hope all goes well with the radiation. A prayer your family's way.

Alissa said...

How sad for him. But how nice that he came across your path today. You did a good thing.

Do you ever read Clare's Dad? http://claresdad.blogspot.com/index.html
He did a post today on charity and it was very well written...

Lauren said...

Oh Kendra, I am in tears. It was so wonderful what you did, we all should do more things like that! I know that the man will have some hot meals and it will warm his body, but also his heart. :)

I love you, thanks for being such a beautiful person.

Lauren :)

momma said...

Kendra,
I'm glad you are willing to help others. I know you are a generous person and it makes me proud to call you my daughter.
The story brought back memories of a cold winter day, long ago, at Wendy's.
I love you,
Momma

twinsplus1 said...

hOk, honestly I have tears in my eyes. I am so touched by your kindness. What a great way to show your daughter the true spirit of the holidays.

twinsplus1 said...

Ok, I honestly have tears in my eyes right now. What a wonderful way to show you daughter the true spirit of the holidays.

Julie said...

Your gesture of kindness brought a smile to my face after a really tough day with a sick toddler. Thanks for sharing. It is wonderful to read a good story!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

I so agree with you! So many people have so little and many of us have so much....it is such a good thing to do, especially at Christmas time. Good for you Kendra.

Granny said...

Random acts of kindness are wonderful.

Anonymous said...

this is tremendous Kendra, and I know you you did not share to get a pat on the back. It made me weep as I read it knowing it was something done through a true spirit of kindness...when was the last time that man experienced that type of kindness?? I am proud to be your sister in the Lord!
Love,
Margaret

Mike ( ex scientia, veritas ) said...

Well done. ' great message, Kendra. We teach by example not words. ;)

Paul said...

Beautiful post. I don't know if you know this or not, but My First Wife and I have worked with homeless people in The Big City near here for many months. Sometimes I blog about it.

You done good. You done very good.

snb said...

being like jesus sure gets us out of our comfort zone, doesn't it? we never know the impact that our lives have on others. i'm sure that your witness changed him forever, and i'm sure god is proud of you!