It’s more usual than exception. As I pull up to a stop light, there is someone standing in the median who is asking for money. In fact, close to the Richmond office is someone who looks like a VCU student, with her SUV parked nearby. Why is she asking for money?
Sometimes I wonder if these people in the medians are addicts, or scam artist panhandlers, or people on disability who are trying to supplement income. Perhaps they have a mother at home who is in need of medication, with it beyond reach to get help or get better. I suppose they all have their story.
A 1999 government study from the Department of Housing and Urban Development determined that the homeless need something more than money. In the survey, 42% said that they need a job; 38% needed housing; 30% said that they needed help to pay rent or utilities; and 13% said that they need training or medical care.
On the Virginia Beach boardwalk, you can find signs that tell you:
I’m not sure that the “government” has a better solution. I guess that’s why I was initially bothered by these signs, until I thought about them a bit. Then, I thought about what it does for me when I reach out of my car window to give money. It’s why I have blogged on it before. The reality is that I feel good when I give money, with no strings attached. Even if there is a possibility that the person receiving does not have the correct motives.
As I write this blog, I realize that I have more questions than answers. I am reminded that Acts 20:35 tells us that “it is more blessed to give than to receive”.
I guess as long as I look and I see, then it’s still important for me to give. When I stop seeing, then I’m the one that needs the most.
And for pic o’ day, this answers the question whether you can phone a dog: