Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Noticing Fear

Most of the time, I consider myself to be a good person. I think of myself as caring and generous.

And then I walk past a homeless person. (Which I do often, because my office is in the Penn Quarter of DC.)

I've gone through the rationalizations for not giving, but in my more reasonable moments, I just don't buy them. What's a buck? And it's really not in my power to determine how a person should spend it, or if that person is spending it wisely. It seems like it should be more about sharing a generous spirit, and connecting with someone in need, even if we cannot possibly meet that need.

But when it comes right down to it, when I get approached by a homeless person, most of the time I get scared. I don't give. I feel bad about it. And I wonder what do to about it.

I'm not sure there is lesson in that or a confession or anything else. That is where I seem to be right now, wanting to help someone but being afraid to do so. And wondering what has to change for me to get past my fear.


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