Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Little Boy on the Street

For the genuine Christian, the major motivating factor for all of life is the desire to please God, not man. The key to pleasing God is faith.
-- Hebrews 11:8

As the red light flashed not far ahead, I released the accelerator of my car and slowly pressed down on the brake until my car stopped. It was still early night so there was a long line of cars and jeeps whose drivers were eager to get out of the city traffic soon. Then I saw a familiar sight.

Out in the dimly lighted part of the street came children of varying ages – around 6-year old to 12-year old. They began knocking on the window of the cars and asked for food or money. Some even rode on the jeepney, and sang songs to the tired commuters hoping to receive money or something to eat.

Then a shabbily dressed little boy shyly approached my car and knocked at my window. The dirt and oil in his knuckles left its imprint on the clean tempered glass. “Sir, money please.” Deep inside I was hoping that the green light would flash soon because I felt an uneasiness in my heart. I knew that I was not suppose to give money to this child for so many man-made reasons: it’s against the city ordinance, it will encourage more beggars into the street, it will endanger the life of these children due to car accident, this children will only use the money to gamble or buy drugs, etc. However, I always felt that something was amiss every time I ignored a beggar on the street. That night was no exception.

Since the green light won’t lit soon, I decided to study the face of the little boy to look for reason not to give in – sign of drug addiction, arrogance, hatred, deception, etc. But what I saw were imploring eyes of a shy child. One who might not yet eaten his supper, if he got one already. Then I realized, yes he was dirty but he was also a person; he was a beggar but was also a soul. And God love all souls that He willing died for it.

As I rolled down the window and hand over a big coin, I smiled at the little boy. At first he was reluctant to smile back, probably thinking that I was handing over a bait or something. Finally, he reached out, got the money, smiled back, said “Thank you”, and moved on. From my side mirror, I saw that the little boy was looking at my car as I speed away. As the music played in the stereo, I felt that my uneasiness melted into happiness, and I knew that I did something right.

Money can buy food to relieve hunger but it is the genuine smile across your face or the gentle words of encouragement even from a stranger that helped relieve the hunger of the soul. When Jesus said, “love other people as much as yourself,” he doesn’t mean that you care only for your family and friends, he also referred to those less fortunate. If you are a genuine Christian then you should do what you need to do no matter how small it is, even if the laws of man say otherwise for your faith is meant to please God, not man.

PS: As Christian, we are called to believe in the Holy Trinity, and to please the Triune God. The Holy Bible says that to please God, we have to have faith in Him. How? By believing that He exists and by following His words. Belief won’t hold true without obedience, and obedience won’t make sense without belief.

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