Lil' dude, there's a saying like, "Give until it hurts." Well, giving should never hurt. It should lift your spirits and make you smile and feel good overall.
I was watching the news early this morning at the gym- the TV's without audio but with the horribly delayed captions instead. I didn't get the whole story, but the pictures were enough.
At a gas station, two cops were inside. The video caught a little boy walk in in his pajamas- shorts and a tank top. He was maybe 4 or 5. No shoes. In the dead of winter. I caught a caption that said, Grandma thought the boy was sleeping in her bed but she couldn't find him. You hear stories like this all winter long.
When I was little, we lived in a suburb of a big metropolitan area. I was 5 or 6; my brother a baby.
Across the street and kitty-corner to us was a brown house where a single mom lived with her son, a kid with long, blond curls named Herb. I remember his face. I became friends with Herb as we built snow tunnels and made snowballs. He was very sweet. He had dirty clothes; his mom wasn't around much. I think she worked nights. As soon as school was over each day, you could bet Herb and I were outside playing until I was called in for dinner. No one ever called Herb in for dinner. He was always too polite to join our family at mealtimes.
One night after playing, my Dad asked if Herb had mittens, as he had never seen him with any. "I don't think so," was my reply.
A few days later I heard my Dad telling my Mom about Herb as they washed and dried the dishes. "I gave him a pair of my work gloves- he didn't have anything to wear on his hands. Nothing to keep him warm," he said.
Sure enough, the next time I saw Herb he finally had gloves on- my Dad's. He didn't mention the gloves, nor did I. We just played like two little kids in love with the snow and imagination.
Herb and his mom moved away before the snow melted. I missed him. But I never forgot him, or my Dad's gift to him.
See, lil' dude, it's as simple as that. Just give what you can, where you see it needs to be given. Take a lesson from your Papa and do it quietly. Do not ask for recognition, do not boast. Just give until ... it feels good.
Tomorrow, you and I are going to a couple charities here in town to drop off two bags full of new baby clothes, winter jackets, mittens, stuffed animals, and books. Last week, you helped me drop off 11 big cans of baby formula to the food shelter a few blocks from where we live. The volunteer who took our donation touched my sleeve and had tears in her eyes. It's that simple. I want you to see we have it good, and there are others who aren't as fortunate as our family. We will help, and we will give.