I was at the library with Elijah the other day. I had just picked him up from school, his brother had basketball practice, so it was just the two of us on the drive home today.
We headed over to the local library I frequent at least once a week to pick up free goodies in the form of books to read or movies to watch. Have I mentioned before how much I LOVE the library? I love the sight of shelves of books, I love the book displays, and I also love the smell the books… but that’s another post for another day…
After picking up our books and videos from the library clerks who have come to know us by name, we head back out into the freezing winter air. Our car was in sight, just a few more steps to at least a little more warmth!
I notice an elderly man with a cane, chatting with someone outside the car parked next to mine. The car leaves, but the man is still there, looking slightly confused.
Hhmm, I wonder what that’s about?
I go to duck into my car, and I hear a voice.
It’s the elderly man I just mentioned.
“Can you please give me a ride to the bus stop?”
Pause… mind racing… let a stranger in the car with me and my 9-year-old son?… well, he looks extremely harmless… I could put him in the front and Elijah in the back… it’s only a 2-minute drive to the bus stop downtown… it’s so cold outside…
“Sure!” I come around the other side of the car and help him in. He looks as surprised as I feel. He mumbles something about getting old and doing foolish things. I ask him if he missed the bus, or was lost. He says he just got confused and needs to get back to the bus station.
We drive and chat about the weather. We ponder on the ways the town is changing. We arrive quickly at the bus station, but he asks me to drop him off across the street at the mall instead.
I stop on the busiest street imaginable, receive a honk from a frustrated tailgater, let out the man I just met 5 minutes ago, say a prayer for his safety, and drive on, back to “normal” life.
Sometimes it’s so easy to help people. They are literally right in your path, every day, asking for help in many different ways.
Do I always hear them? No.
Do I always want to help? No.
For me, it seems easier to help others half way around the globe than in my own neighbourhood.
But I am learning. There are so many to help. With as little as a ride to the bus station and 5 minutes of my time.
I was really blessed by the man with the cane outside the library.
Be on the lookout for unexpected blessings in your life today.