September 1, 2009

Lesson in a Chili's

Spend enough time walking downtown and you 'll have stories to tell. I met a man yesterday , his name is Ayi Ayi from West Africa, he's a refuge and was stranded until his sponsor met up with him this Thursday. He was hungry and asked me for food, not money. Now I have to just say I'm not the kind of person that gives money to the beggars every time I see one, and in no way I'm trying to brag, this is not something I would normally do, buy a complete stranger dinner at Chili's, and sit with him as he ate. But ,I did feel at the moment I should ,so i did. He had been in a concentration camp for 9 months in his homeland of Togo, before he had been seen sent here, he was tortured and his eyesight had been damaged because of it. His family was killed in a bombing. I was completely intrigued, between the smiles of eating food and watery eyes of the painful experiences he had lived since last week being in the streets, I felt an immense sense of gratitude, that I could in some way help him and make his journey a little better. The were a lot of thank yous and mercies, he expressed his gratefulness. Last night and this morning I woke up thinking about him, I do not understand the reasons for suffering in the world, but I do know that we can be part in someones healing, that we can help even with a meal, or a few minutes of listening to someone. That day he helped me more that what I believe I did for him. Is not everyday I have the opportunity to meet men of courage, in fact it's very rare, but when it does happen, I'm changed a bit and forever.

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