kindness

 

Just the other week while at a coffee shop having a merrily productive morning (which doesn't always happen with my preggo brain, I can assure you!), a young man in his 20s came in and sat next to me.

He didn't pay for a coffee or drink, but instead put in some ear buds to listen to music on his phone.

Because he didn't act like a ‘normal' customer, he made me nervous enough that I didn't want to leave my laptop next to him to use the bathroom like I would normally do.

Total judgment on my part.

He left the coffee shop, then came back with a Lunchables bought from the grocery store around the corner.

And Then the Most Shocking Thing Occurred…

When he finished eating, he took out his ear buds, smiled, and asked if I'd like his Reese's Cup. He said he didn't want it.

I thanked him kindly, feeling bad at that point for my quick judgment of him.

The next day, eager to keep up that productivity I so crave lately, I went to a different coffee shop about 7 miles away from that one where I had met him.

Not one hour after I sit down to write, the same guy walks in and sits next to me.

Seriously.

I smile and acknowledge him, then continue on with my writing.

Except that this time the man sitting on my other side starts a conversation with this Reese's-Cup-Giving-young man because he thinks this guy might also be Ethiopian (there's a group of nice Ethiopian men who frequent this location who love to chat it up with one another).

During the course of this conversation that I couldn't help but hear, this young man's story unfolded.

Here's the Rundown:

  • He is a homeless rapper.
  • He keeps in touch with his parents through his phone + free wifi at coffee shops.
  • He said he lives off of the kind blessings of others and that God is looking out for him.

Honestly, I was moved.

And if I'm going to be really honest, which I am, I was a bit ashamed of myself.

A homeless person, whom I had totally judged from the get-go, had thought generously enough to give ME something: a Reese's Cup.

What had I done for him except pass judgment?

I Receive Two Gifts from this Young Man

The man next to me bought the young man a lunch and something to drink. He was truly grateful.

He sat down next to me and ate. Awhile later, I noticed he began to cry.

I reached out to him and asked if he wanted to talk about something, or if he just wanted to cry (which I told him was totally okay — I'm an introvert and understand sometimes just wanting to be alone with my emotions).

He thanked me.

So I told him that I was the girl yesterday who he had given his Reese's to (he had completely forgotten), and that it had absolutely made my morning. I pulled out my wallet and had a $5 bill to give him. He said, “you don't have to do that.”

I replied, “I know I don't have to. I want to.”

Probably more than that, I gave him some encouragement, telling him it was touching that he had given me so much when he had so little. Tweet this!

He had offered me something with true generosity of heart. Such pure generosity, in fact, that it made me pause to reflect. It also gave me the chance to offer another person something out of pure generosity.

What a gift that he gave me…again.

Honestly, I was so moved by this whole thing that I felt the need to share it with you. Lots of emotions to work through. Probably the toughest being the realization that I have so much while others have so little, I worry too much when in reality God has and will continue to provide for me + my family in ways that blow me away, and that I need to be more generous to others because you just never know what their situation is.

2 replies
  1. Crystal
    Crystal says:

    Awwww! I love it when people surprise me. I also make snap judgments, but I think of it as necessary (especially when I’m on my own…and I am a lot thanks to pet sitting). We should keep an eye out. But it’s fantastic when the world gives us an opportunity to help and be helped.

    Reply

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