Sunday, June 10, 2012

If Only I Were a Billionaire

Yesterday evening as I was driving from In-N-Out Burger, I spotted this man on the side of the road holding up a tattered sign that read

"I'm a Vietnam veteran and I'm homeless..."

I couldn't make out the rest of the sign because of the angle he was positioned and the speed I was driving. As I drove past him I made eye contact with him and mouthed "Sorry" to let him know that I acknowledged him and that I wanted to help.

After sitting at the light for, God knows how long, I looked back at him in my rearview. He was old and scruffy, his clothes were worn, and it was getting fairly late out and I felt worse than what I had felt originally when first I drove past him. I looked in my wallet and discovered the $3.00 I was going to use at McDonalds to buy apple pies and a drink. I figured he need the money more than I, and I said to myself as I took the money out of my wallet, "I'm sowing a seed." He's in a worse situation than I and I figured that I'd just use my credit card instead.

After analyzing the road behind me and the amount of time it took before the light changed, I decided to put my car in Reverse and drove back to him. As I gave him the money, I bravely said to him, "This is all I have." He was very appreciative. Right at that moment I was getting teary eyed because I wanted to give him more.

There's no reason for anyone to suffer in this country, especially when there are so many resources available. And the fact that he's a veteran made my pity for him even worse.

As I drove to McDonald's holding back my tears, I said out loud to myself, "If I'm ever in a situation where I could help someone, I would."

If only I were a billionaire.