It was the Fourth of July when my husband and I, lacking any kind of tradition on that day, took a drive to the largest town in the county. I wanted to eat outside in the sun, but nothing was open. So we picked up a Chinese dinner for two at the grocery deli, plus one of those specialty sandwiches for me to have later. Then we found a park with an empty table. As we parked the car, this young man was under a nearby tree. He was filthy dirty, and it looked as if he had everything he owned in a pile beside him. As we got out with our bags of food, he said in a friendly tone, "If you have any leftovers, I'll take them!" We replied with a smile and "Okay!" We sat at a nearby table next to the public swimming pool, and it wasn't 5 minutes before my husband said, "I'm going to give him your sandwich." I agreed. (It didn't take the young man long to devour it and carry the paper wrapping over to a trash can.) We started on our Chinese food, which is always enough for two meals. I started combining containers, and without speaking, we gathered up at least half of the food and put the containers in the bag again. I said, "You give him your drink because mine is diet." As we left, we stopped to hand the young man the food and drink, and I asked him if someone knew where he was. He grinned and said they did, and that he was waiting for his girlfriend to get out of jail.
So often, we are somewhat unsure of the panhandlers near the freeway entrance or at the road leading to Wal Mart, knowing that many of them make a pretty good living as a scam. But this young man was no scam, and giving him food and drink on this Independence Day made our hearts feel good.
Linking up with Scripture and a Snapshot on Katie Lloyd's blog.