Thursday, September 02, 2010

Hungry - by Linz

As I was driving back from a morning run with a friend we saw a man on the street corner holding a sign that read: JUST TRYING TO SURVIVE. HUNGRY. GOD BLESS YOU. The hungry part of the sign was in big, bold letters.

We were stopped at the red light and my friend dug through her purse to scrounge up seventy-five cents. As we drove away she commented that she felt bad that she only had seventy-five cents. And then we talked a bit about how hard it must be to have to humble yourself to asking for change just to get a meal.

Later that morning, I was running errands and I saw that the man was still there. I decided to run in to Safeway and pick up a few groceries and take them over to him. I took the boys into the store and we got bagels, bananas bottled water and a candy bar. So I pulled around the parking lot to where he was standing and carried the groceries over to him. Before I could make it all the way, he put up his hands and said, "NO". Ummm. I was kind of surprised so I just stood there for a second. He then said, "I am not accepting any food today." So I commented that his sign said he was hungry. "A lot of people have tried to offer me food, but I am not taking food today." ...Umm, Ok... Then as I am walking away he asks me, "But can you spare any change." I said NO, and walked away...probably not the most gracious move, but I wasn't in the mood to try to help him anymore.

When I got home and told Brad my story, he was not the least bit surprised. I just don't want to have to be so cynical about who really needs help...but the guy that I tried to help, didn't really need help. I saw him the next day jogging to his corner while listening to an Mp3 player.

Now I don't know what to think!

6 comments:

Aimee Sue said...

I remember a very similar thing happening when I was a child,we stopped at a gas station and there was a guy holding a sign stating that he was hungry my parents bought the guy food and he refused it and unfortunately since that experience I have always been leary about giving money to people.

Jeremy said...

I never give money to people on the street. I've had that same experience more than once where I've bought food or had food with me and they've refused. Remind me to tell you a story about a situation like that when I was in South Carolina some time. Really sucks that we have to be like that but my conscience feels better that I haven't helped their drug/alcohol/caffeine addictions.

Nina said...

I gave like you did and was sad and my husband told me that God knew my heart and why I gave. I didn't want to stop giving and I found lots of others ways to do so. I also wanted my girls and now my grandkids to know the joy of giving. God knows your heart Lindsey.i love you !

Brad said...

I still think we should drive by, take a picture of him and add it to your post.

...Maybe even get a video of him denying food with his sign declaring his hunger.

Liz said...

I struggle with that too - If they are given $5 every 15 minutes and they put in an 8 hour day, that's $160! More than I make for sure. If you felt led and you obeyed, then you did the Lord's work. How God uses it is His plan. Mostly I don't feel led, but oddly enough last night a guy was buying several cans of energy beer and as he sorted through his quarters and dimes realized he didn't have enough money... I cheerfully gave him the rest. Now that is from God, cuz I would typically rush to judgment and write him off. Who knows...

toby said...

How about the guy I saw on the corner today: His sign said "I NEED $250"!!