Could you use $5?

By September 18, 2013Shannon

This post is by Shannon.

Today’s post is going to be relatively short but I just wanted to share an experience that both uplifted and challenged me.  Hopefully it will do the same for you…

The other day I was driving through town and stopped at a busy intersection.  I glanced over to my right and saw a man standing on the corner with a cardboard sign.  Now, you probably expect me to describe him as looking unkempt and wearing old/dirty clothes.  You think his sign would read something along the lines of, “Hungry and homeless.  Every little big helps.  God Bless.”  As sad as it is, that’s what’s “normal” in our world.

But that’s not what this was at all.  This man was standing on the corner with a sign that read, “I have a job.  I have a home.  Could you use an extra $5?”

I did a double take… wait, what?

I really wish I knew this guy’s story.  Why did he choose to spend his Friday morning on a street corner handing out five dollar bills?  Maybe he’s experienced poverty in his life and wants to help others who are struggling with it now… maybe he’s big on random acts of kindness… maybe he simply wants to help others.  I don’t know.

What I do know is that this man impacted me.  No, I didn’t take the $5.  What I mean is that his actions (whatever the motivation) reminded me that doing something good for others can be as simple as standing on a street corner.  Without even realizing it, this man has challenged me to think more about how I can serve those in need around me.

I’m really bad about over-thinking things and making them much more complicated than they need to be.  Jesus tells us to care for his people… for the sick, the hungry, and the homeless.  I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure that I’m guilty of spending more time thinking about helping others than actually doing it… and that realization breaks my heart.  I need to stop thinking so much and start acting on what I know Jesus desires from me.

I don’t know how many $5 bills that man gave out that day.  One thing I’m sure of is that his impact went far beyond those who received money from him.  It may not have been his intention, but I think his actions can serve as an inspiration for us to do something simple for those around us.