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Kindness, Giving for the Sake of Giving

by Lisa Poole on Monday, August 10, 2015

I know my blog is attached to my massage business page but there are times where I am not inspired to write about health and massage. And seeing that it is my blog, I am the boss, after all, I can decide what I want to write about. It may be a news story or a crazy indecent that happened to me that will inspire me. This week’s inspiration came from FaceBook.

I admit I spend some time on FB and belong to a few different groups. One group is focused on happenings in Manchester. As a new resident, I like to see what is going on here in the city. I have seen several posts regarding the “panhandlers, homeless, junkies or scammers” whatever they may be called in someone’s post. The streets seem to be full of these folks.

I find it very sad how people can be so angry and cruel in their comments and reactions to the people on the streets. I am not one to have my head buried in the sand and believe that every individual asking for a handout is going to use it for food, shelter or clothing. Yes, I am sure many are taking the money to buy drugs and alcohol. Instead of judging them I need to remind myself to ask why they are there. What brought them to this place in their life? Was it a bad decision that has spiraled so out of control they find themselves on the streets? Is it a mental illness, PTSD, an addiction, or a true life choice (yes they could be doing it just to make money)? What help do they really need? Why do I immediately judge? I hear my parents in my head “Don’t judge a book by its cover”. Take a moment and look at the individual, really look. That person is someone’s brother/sister, father/mother, or son/daughter?

Who these individuals really do matter. What and why they are doing matters. How we react when we see or talk about them matters.

I heard this song “What its like” by Everlast while writing this post and it hits home to what I am trying to say.

The post that leads me here was someone was warning others to not give to the man whose story was XYZ…. they had given him all the change they had feeling bad for this man. Then they saw that same person a week later with the same story. They felt that they were tricked, that they were scammed. I can understand the frustration with feeling duped. I don’t think you should feel guilty to give. Or guilt because you did, thinking the money you gave was not used for what you think it should be used for. Give to give. Give to be kind to another human being.

People say and do “pay it forward” all the time. Do they think after OMG I bought a coffee for a stranger who could be a thief, drug dealer, abuser or worse yet the leprechaun who stole my lucky charms   No most folks “pay it forward” just because? They do so and walk away. They give just to give. They are being kind, friendly, and sharing in their good fortune. However small it may be. They give with no expectations.

Why is that so different from giving to the man on the corner with the sign? Give with no strings, no expectation, no GUILT. Be kind. Don’t judge. We do not know their story. If you don’t want to give because you believe they will buy drugs then do not give, don’t judge them. Take what little you would have given them and give to the local homeless shelter or food bank instead. Charity is a good thing if given to the right organization and when given for the right reason.

Be kind. Share a smile, a cup of coffee or a handful of change. We all care so much about a lion in Africa how about caring more for our fellow citizens that are right here on the streets. Most I believe are doing the best that they can with the circumstances they are in. As I said, if you want to give; give, if you don’t want to, don’t.

I don’t want to come across preachy. It bothered me to read the reactions to this post I saw and I wanted to share my thoughts. Maybe I need to stop going on FB. But if I did I would not see the posts on the best pizza place in Manchester or the cute puppy and kitty videos. Thank you for reading something that was not health focused or some funny story but something I wanted to share.

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