Our mail boxes and inboxes are full of them ~ pleas for organizations for end of the year, tax-deductible donations. Grocery stores have bags that you can fill for families other than your own. Groups of all kinds sponsor families and buy gifts so that someone who can’t just maybe can this year. Much of this seasonal giving is very well organized and documented. Some of it isn’t. These are two of those stories.
First: whenever she shops, she picks up an extra toothbrush and toothpaste adding less than $3 to her grocery bill. Every time. The toothbrush and toothpaste go into a grocery bag hanging on the back of a door. Sometime this season, she will take the bag to a shelter that serves the homeless - a women’s shelter where women come who have left violence with nothing but themselves and sometimes their children - a place that offers shelter and a little dignity to street people. She doesn’t get any tax credit. No one knows about it except her and the person to whom she hands the bag. And people who just might not have a toothbrush and toothpaste, have them.
Second: two young men standing on a corner by a grocery store with a sign that said “Hungry. Anything helps”. With her own finances in flux, she bought $20 worth of groceries ~ bread, lunch meat, sliced cheese, grapes, bananas, roasted pumpkin seeds and a gallon of water. No tax credit. No credit of any kind except the gratitude of two hungry people.
These are the kind of people that epitomize the true spirit of giving at this time of the year and all year. Which brings me to one last reminder: whatever you do now, go to July on your calendar and make yourself a note to do it again then. Hungry people, shelters, non-profits have needs all year round. Blessings, to all who stop by here, as you continue your journey in grace.