The Season of Giving

I was walking back to work after visiting the National Christmas Park today at the Ellipse in Washington, D.C., when I saw a homeless guy rattling a cup on the sidewalk. I checked to see if I had any money on me, but it turns out that I had used all of my dollar bills on presents and errands through the week. But I saw the man there, so I decided to take time out of my break to run across the street, withdraw money from my account, and come back to give it to the man.

So I gave the guy some money, and told him to stay warm out here. He thanked me, and after a brief pause, he said “Bless you.” I knew I had done the right thing. I’ve been thinking a lot about things, about life, and we’re all born into different circumstances – some more favorable than others. But I’ve always felt that for people like us, the people that have the college degree, landed a job, and made a decent living, we also hold a social responsibility to take care of others that are less fortunate.

For that guy, $5 is the difference between getting a chance to eat and going to sleep hungry that night. For me, it amounts to reimbursement for a meager amount of time working at the office. I feel that those of us that have the resources and power to make a difference should take the necessary steps in making life much more manageable for others. It could mean giving spare change to a man on the street, it could mean helping an old lady get to her destination, it could mean building low income housing, and even if you don’t have the resources to help someone out, it’s even as simple as keeping them in your thoughts, your well-wishes, and your prayers.

I hope to do this more in 2012, and I strongly encourage everyone to be mindful of those that face difficult circumstances. Everyone out there could use some help, and the holidays are the biggest time to remember our responsibility to humanity, and do the right thing for someone. So take some time out to make a difference. $5 may be enough for a coffee or something from CVS, but some people around the world struggle to even make $5 a day to support their family. Speak with your heart this holiday season.


– Danny

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