Just before I made it to my first mile mark, my music just stopped. It was as if something was telling me hey, get out of your head and pay attention for a minute. I rounded a corner and down the street was a man with a shopping cart. I did my usual sum up of the situation to figure out where I was going to avoid being in this man’s way.
And then he stopped. He stopped with the cart and pulled it to the side of the sidewalk. For a moment I thought he was stopping because I was coming and did not want to be in my way. But then he started walking into the wooded area to the left of me, and I noticed that he was heading that way because this was his home. There was a little set up, with what was probably furniture that others had thrown out. He was taking some items down to his little area in the woods with his shopping cart.
My heart went out to him. I know I am so blessed in so many ways and here is a man, not too far from me, that is living out in the elements. As I write this it is raining outside. What is he doing to keep dry? We are in the holiday season and there are so many unfortunate people that need help. As I am writing this I realize I don’t know how to help them. I can give to charities or toy drives… but how do I help the homeless man living in the woods?
I am saddened by the conditions this man faces daily, but at the same time I am thankful for everything I have. Those everyday problems do not seem so big when compared to the true suffering that others go through everyday. I am thankful for my friends, family and accomplishments. But I also do not want to be blind to others who are less fortunate. Life is a gift and we need to look out for each other. A little compassion goes a long way.