I'm a never say "no" sort of person. I will take on any project if I have 5 minutes to spare. I like to keep busy. I figure I'll sleep when I'm dead. Lately I've been feeling a little empty though. Life has a way of eating away at you one piece at a time. Something is missing. I work so hard and I'm coming to realize that I'm working really hard for the benefit of myself. My life has been full of blessings and I am so grateful for every one of them. But there are so many people in the world who aren't as fortunate as I am. There are a lot of people who need help. I want to start volunteering. I want to participate in an activity that is for the benefit of someone else. I have been thinking about this for a while now, but I saw something today that confirmed it for me.
I stopped by the grocery store on my way home tonight to pick up sugar for my morning coffee. While I was there, a man was being arrested for theft. He was handcuffed like a criminal, walked through the store and loaded into a Police car for stealing $6 worth of food. This man stole only what he needed to eat tonight: two cans of chili and a block of cheese. As he was being handcuffed in the back of the store, our eyes met for a split second. I didn't look away. I looked him in the eye and smiled at him. There was something inside of me that wanted to let him know that I wasn't looking down on him in his time of need and desperation. I wanted to let him know that I understood. I wanted to give him a little dignity. There was something about that moment that just killed me. He looked so sad and ashamed. He was hungry and had nothing. There I stood in the aisle holding a case of Dr. Pepper and a bag of sugar. I would have happily bought him groceries for the night had I only been there 10 minutes earlier and known how desperate he was. It broke my heart.
There is no reason that anyone should have to go hungry. No one should be so desperate for food that they're forced to steal. Food is a basic necessity and should be available to everyone.
Like I have said before, I believe everything happens for a reason. There is a reason why I saw that man when I did. There is a reason why our paths crossed in the way that they did. I don't know who he was. I don't know what sequence of events brought him to that point in his life. What I do know, is that moment, when our eyes met, changed my life forever.