If you live in a city, you have most likely seen or come in contact with a homeless person one time or another. Maybe you walked by without giving them any sort of time, or when they asked for some spare change you replied to them with, "I don't have any on me at the moment." On the contrary, maybe you are that person who took a minute to give them a few dollars or bought them a little something to eat.
I find this topic interesting mainly because their backgrounds vary all the time. For example, some are homeless veterans, some runaway teens, some just lost everything they have. I am a firm believer in making something of yourself in the sense that if you want to be something, go out and give it your all. But sometimes, people hit rock bottom and it may have just been an unexpected incidence that caused them to be out on the streets.
A little over a month ago I met this man in Columbus, GA. I wrote a Facebook post following the ten minutes my boyfriend and I talked to him. Here is the post:
"God works in mysterious ways. Following dinner, a man stopped Nik and I on the streets of Columbus. Little did we know he was a staff sergeant in the military, recently had a stroke and his fiancé left him after his accident and took his money. We met a man and a follower of God. A man of God.
He has gotten himself a job and is currently on the streets while he’s saving to get shelter. As a firm believer in having people cross paths for a reason, my place was to be there, to listen to his story, and to give him $20 which is all I had on me. But if it means he can a have a meal then that is okay.
Let this be a reminder to all that just because someone is having struggles in life, doesn’t mean you should ignore them. Listen to what they have to say, and go from there. I will be praying for that man because I can truly say he was a wonderful man."
I am often guilty of walking past people and not giving them the time of day to hear them out either because I don't have anything on me to help them or I am in a hurry to get somewhere. But what I learned from this event is that I need to stop and listen more and take a few minutes out of my day to go and buy someone some lunch. Not all, but some will be very grateful.
My challenge to you: take five minutes to listen to someone and hear their story and be a friend.