Friday, November 12, 2010

When I was in the big city last weekend, my brother and I were solicited by a homeless man.

Which means, a man who appeared to be homeless, was standing on a corner. As we approached, he tried to hand us a flyer and asked, "Can you help the city's homeless today?"

At the same time, my brother and I said "No, thank you," and "Sorry. Not today."

When the light changed, we crossed the street, and the man hollered after us, "Fine! Be selfish!" And some other things.


That rebuke made me feel angry, frustrated, and sad. Even more so when my brother told me that he saw that guy all the time, and he frequently yelled at whoever did not give. I felt bad for the man, and also frustrated that he was so quick to declare me selfish.

He doesn't know me. He doesn't know what I do or don't do. How can he judge?

And yet, those questions are hard to answer when I turn them around on myself. What do I really know, and how often do I quickly judge the habits of others?

So even though it stung, and made me angry, maybe it was good for me to be confronted by this man. Maybe it was important for me to see that not every person in need is a smiling, thankful child. Some people are angry, disturbed, and will never make me feel good about giving.

And that is okay.

Because giving should not be about my gratification. It should not be about me getting a thank you (or even, I know you are a nice lady and just don't have any cash right now!) - it should just be about me giving.

Whenever I can.

Because that is what God tells me to do.

Giving Day 12 - Keep on loving each other as brothers. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it. Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves are suffering. . . And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. Hebrews 13:1-3, 16

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One Response to “Selfish”

  1. Hey Courtney! I enjoy reading about your giving challenge each have definitely made me look at myself as a giver & inspired me to give.

    I have a suggestion for giving that may or may not be of interest to you. Each year, my husband and I donate to the USO care package that sends gift boxes to service members overseas. You can even do it in honor of/in memory of if you'd like. Just a thought...

    I continue to enjoy your blogs, Anne