The Gift of Survival

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by chicagosam, Dec 19, 2009.

  1. chicagosam

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    I was out running errands this afternoon and went to a shopping center in a rather affluent area. As I turned to go in, there was a man standing on the median with a sign. At first I thought it was a college student looking for a way home. Once I saw the sign, I realized it was someone who was in desperate need of help. It was a miserable, cold, snowy day and this man looked like he had just enough on to keep warm. His sign said: "Lost my job. I have kids. I need help." While this could have been a scam, my gut instinct said that this was a horrifying reality of our current economy. While many of the people driving past ignoring him were out worrying about that expensive gift, this man was humbling himself hoping for no more than a chance to help keep his family alive. He seemed like a man who never expected to be standing on a street corner looking for charity.

    I could not drive by with someone this much in need. I have experienced this. I took everything I had in my wallet and gave it to him. My hope is that it helped, but my fear is that it wasn't enough. I wished I had more to give to him. The best I could give him was a wad of money, some hope, and a sense that someone else cared. Maybe that was enough.

    The frightening aspect of this experience is that in this economy this could be any of us. His sign reminded me of pictures from the Great Depression. My hope is that he will get through this, that others helped him today, and that he will find employment soon and have some sense of security restored to him and his family.

    I have done a lot of charity in my lifetime. This one really got to me.
     
  2. nudeyorker

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    You are a good man. It is the season of giving and sharing.
     
  3. Rikter8

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    Agreed. Very kind of you.

    Sadly, I think your going to see a whole bunch more of that.

    I'm glad I stay away from the soup kitchens. I'd end up driving my hillbilly 4X4 and crushing every new Caddillac in the parking lot.
    It irritates me to no end to see people take advantage of the system, which shuts the true needy out.
     
  4. B_a new long one

    B_a new long one New Member

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    Praise the LORD! It is good people like you that makes you remember humanity. I wish you a Happy Holiday season, you will be blessed.
     
  5. rob_just_rob

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    A good thing, that.
     
  6. naughty

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    Workin' up a good pot of mad!
    I am glad you do not allow the thought of someone else's possible scam numb you to the fact that this could be for real. Thank you for your kindness. As you mentioned but for the grace it could be anyone of us...
     
  7. chicagosam

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    While I appreciate the kind comments being directed towards me, the intent of this thread was not to draw attention to me but to this sad situation that is happening to more than just this man. My hope is that others just like him will be helped.
     
  8. naughty

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    Workin' up a good pot of mad!
    We understand that you didnt mention it to get a pat on the back. you had an epiphany that you wanted to share with us. But as WE said, Thank you.
     
  9. jason_els

    jason_els <img border="0" src="/images/badges/gold_member.gi

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    That brought a few tears to my eyes.

    I can only aspire to that kind of compassion.

    May providence keep you the fine man you are.
     
  10. Drifterwood

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    Chicagosam-aritan 1 Pharisees 0

    :kiss:
     
  11. Drifterwood

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    Sorry if I caused any offence to any Pharisees, especially as I haven't personally done anything for my fellow man today. :wink:
     
    #11 Drifterwood, Dec 20, 2009
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2009
  12. B_Stronzo

    B_Stronzo New Member

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    Until this present recession I'd heard ad nauseum about The Great Depression as my family called me "the consumer". Even though they never really suffered the thinking held over from that time made one of my grandaunts refuse to buy lettuce if it went over one dollar a head.

    I was once smug about that. I am no longer.

    Thanks for recounting that Sam. What I've managed to learn since the economy took a nose dive is that there's much to be learned from previous generations who, though often too-inclined to recount their truisms, have much to instruct from their own experiences.

    During this season especially we can all be happy that (so far) we've not been reduced to bread lines. However I have seen the very sorts of signs of which you speak. I, however mindful, did not do what you did.

    Your story gives me great pause.
     
  13. bigbull29

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    There isn't just one day or season for compassion; it should be everyday.

    If there is one thing lacking in today's world, it is compassion. If you have just a tiny bit to offer, offer it. A little big goes a long way. People just want a shoulder to cry on with no harsh judgments coming their way. (you're lazy, you're a bum, go get a job, you're scum). That's how Christians are supposed to act, but so few do.

    I commend you for what you did, chicagosam. I am so proud of you. :smile: If everyone were like you, the world would be a very different place.

    God bless you!
     
  14. Drifterwood

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    I am so going to use this line. Thanks BB :wink:
     
  15. DaveyR

    DaveyR Retired Moderator
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    Having lived in some big cities in the UK you get hardened off to this sort of thing (very sad I know). I always found though that I had a "gut instinct" about who was genuine and would give to them.

    Your post reminded me about an incident in LA 6 years ago. We came out of our hotel in Anaheim and were heading towards Disney for a meal and night out. We passed a young woman sitting in a bus shelter. She had a head full of matted hair. Something about her eyes and kind but sad face got to me though and when I looked at Paul I could read his mind. We gave her the cash we had on us. Her face lit up and I will never ever forget what she said to us. "God will remember this". She immediately headed into Denny's which was just over the road and that told us we had done the right thing.

    Despite having come across 1000's of homeless people I still think about that woman often and hope she came across better times.
     
  16. DiscoBoy

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    That was truly great of you, Sammy. The situation's dire but it's people like you that bring hope. :kiss::hug:
     
  17. bigbull29

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    Be my guest. It's a good one -- you have to admit that:biggrin1:

    Take care, buddy.
     
  18. ropa

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    Sam, that was a truly kind act. I have to wonder how many "Christians" out there that will go to church and spread the good word would have merely driven past this man and done nothing. Probably the same people that would condemn all of us to hell for even visiting a site such as LPSG.

    It is very comforting to know that there are truly good people everywhere that have no agenda. May you have the happiest of holidays.
     
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