A Lesson From the Middle of the Road

Posted on June 15, 2009 by ELCA World Hunger

Last Thursday evening I attended a book discussion with some of my colleagues. The discussion was about The Life You Can Save by Peter Singer and the majority of us present were all members of organizations dedicated to fighting world hunger. As the evening came to an end and our small group of three left, we began to chat about the work that we were involved in, the different ways that we tithe, the importance of giving your time…and on and on. Eventually our group dropped down to two members, Jessica and I. As she navigated the way to my house to drop me off we pulled up to a stop light and there, standing in the middle of the road, was a young woman. She couldn’t have been more than twenty. It was ten o’clock at night and she was shivering in jeans and a light sweater, when I saw her I had an overwhelming feeling of meeting Jesus. In the Gospel Jesus talks about how if you have done unto the least of these, you have done unto Me. It was an incredible opportunity to share what we had been talking about all evening with someone in need. We rolled down the window and handed her three dollars – all the cash we had – realizing that this was a chance to affect the life we CAN save. At best the three dollars bought her a small meal for the evening, but more importantly, we wanted to show that other people do care, that there is hope. Before we rolled the window back up though, the woman turned to us and said, “Thank you so much, and God bless you.” The sincerity in her voice was unmistakable. It got me thinking about all of the homeless and hungry people I pass on the street downtown and how they also always say, “God bless you,” even if I only give them a passing smile. What faith!

I imagine that many of these people are fed at soup kitchens or food pantries and that if they are lucky they get to sleep in a shelter, but no matter what, they are faithful to their Creator. What an incredible lesson. Those who seem like they could be so angry at God for the position that they are in are instead the most faithful. Who am I, to not bless God and be His hands every day?

-Lana Lile

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