Posts Tagged ‘charity’

jessicarobles519

“Charity is no substitute for justice withheld.”~ Saint Augustine

So here’s a story for you about a lot of things. Charity being one of them.

In Florida, Jessica Robles realized that she had no food in the house to feed herself or her small children. Her boyfriend just lost his job, and due to some kind of error, she had been receiving food assistance but had lost it because of the glitch.

What does Jessica do in her time of absolute desperation? She went to the local grocery store and filled her grocery cart with about $300 of groceries and attempted to simply walk out without paying for it.

But she did not get away with it. Seasoned Miami-Dade police officer Vicki Thomas busted Jessica for shoplifting.

And this is where the tale turns into an unusual twist. Instead of taking Jessica to jail, Vicki went inside the grocery store and with HER OWN MONEY, purchased $100 worth of groceries.

When Vicki asked Jessica why she had committed the crime, the answer unsettled Vicki to her core: “My children are hungry.”

Apparently, Jessica did not have any history of habitual shoplifting. Instead of going to jail and allowing the children to go on being hungry, she was given a misdemeanor and told to show up in court. And then received the $100 in groceries. The officer making Jessica promise that once she was able to get back on her feet that she give the  same kind of help to someone else that she received.

And that’s where the bulk of the story splits off into differently wild directions. None of which I can track and verify to be the truth. But everything up to this point, is the truth.

Speculation suggests that when the news of this heart-warming story of charity by the law officer was spread around, that people donated to help out Jessica. And from that general donation, she received an additional $700 in groceries. Another story claims that she was picked up for an interview based on this wild crime story, and ended up landing a job in customer service.

As much as this story is loving and gives people the gooey inside feeling of warmth. I look at this situation and feel for Jessica. However, stealing/shoplifting would probably not be the direction that I would go in, in order to feed my children. But I do not know exactly her situation. Perhaps she did try other things to keep afloat and it fell apart or whatever.

And should the other stories be true about how the community came together to help her out and gave her so many groceries…. I hope that for her own sake and for the sake of her children, that she does the right thing and fights her way to get back on her feet, rather than hope that someone will bail her out again when all that goes away. However, as I stated, I do not know if the uber-generosity story is true or not.

http://www.wsvn.com/news/articles/local/21012009392020/cop-helps-admitted-shoplifter-with-groceries/
http://www.baynews9.com/content/news/baynews9/news/article.html/content/news/articles/bn9/2013/10/22/miami_dade_officer_b.html

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“If you haven’t got any charity in your heart, you have the worst kind of heart trouble.”~ Bob Hope

So the final episode that I will write about this past weekend was the afternoon in which I was waiting to return home.

After seeing so many characters that were bonkers and insane, I just thought it best to keep to myself until I got home.

While I waited, a vehicle came rushing through the Shell gas station parking lot complete with squealing tires. The passenger door popped open and a small girl exited the vehicle. There was  gentleman driving, presumed by me to be her father.

I suspected that she had to use the restroom and so they stopped there. As she did so, she took all of the garbage out of the vehicle and threw it away. Both of her hands were full of trash that she had to nudge the car door shut with her foot.

As she walked away, the driver squealed off again and kept circling around the gas pumps before finally settling in on parking ILLEGALLY in the handicapped parking…. to which I was nearby. I wasn’t thrilled about that at all. But I’m not the law.

The guy rolled down his window and asked me if I wanted to listen to Springsteen. Again presuming here: Bruce Springsteen. So I nodded to him.

I halfway expected him to crank up the volume but he didn’t.

Several minutes passed and he sat there illegally parked before I noticed out of the corner of my eye that the girl had come out of the gas station and now had to walk over to where the vehicle was parked.

I paid no attention to it.

Then I heard this voice say “HI!” to me. It was the girl. She handed me a wad of cash.

I looked at the old man in the vehicle and he nodded and smiled. I took the cash from her hand and she said nothing else and walked away. When she was inside the vehicle, he offered a salutation and sped out of the parking lot and onto the streets like he was Don Johnson or something.

This blew my mind!

For those of you who believe in karma would probably believe that this guy really done good with this act of charity.

I sat there for much of the hour wondering WHY he did it. But that was never to be answered in this lifetime. I could speculate for the rest of my life as to why he made that decision to give me money.

The first thing that came to my mind as I watched his vehicle cruise down the street was I wondered if I looked like a panhandler. But I really did not. I thought I looked like someone who was traveling. Luggage bag in tow.

Over and over in my mind I kept wondering what just happened and why it happened. It all snapped out of my mind when little Miss Attitude arrived.

I didn’t receive a lot of money. But it was ENOUGH to do something with it. Still it sits here on the desk near the  computer… not sure what to do with it, if anything at all.

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“Lots of people think they’re charitable if they give away their old clothes and things they don’t want.”~ Myrtle Reed

As Christmas Day is now a few days passed us, I’m still thinking about one story that I heard about via Facebook, that just blew me away to the point of my heart just melting and tears forming in the corners of my eyes.

It was a true story of charity that happened. I will however for this blog’s sake paraphrase and hope that in my telling of this story, I get it accurate.

When I heard about what had happened, I sent a message to the person today, to see if I could have her tell the story of her charitable deed done on Christmas Day.

A woman in North Carolina was getting gasoline just shortly before the Thanksgiving holiday when she was having a conversation with a sweet elderly woman who was working at the gas station/store.

The woman had asked the employee what her plans for Christmas were. And the elderly employee had replied that she had nobody to celebrate either holiday with and she had no remaining family left and therefore she would be working on both holidays, that way she could allow for others to spend time with their own families.

It was a sad moment for the woman getting gasoline to the point she mentioned that it broke her heart.

On Christmas Day, the same woman from North Carolina had stopped on the way back from a Christmas family dinner and stopped at a different location and found the woman to be working there. Surprisingly enough, the amount of Christmas gifts that she had in her vehicle was one too many for her family and friends, so she ended up finding the elderly woman and giving her that gift so that she could say that she shared in just that brief moment, some kindness and love on Christmas Day.

This random act of kindness, or RAK, was just the thing that I was most happy to see come across Facebook on Christmas Day this year.  With the previous days of post after post after post after post of people sharing what they had received, in a sense of “LOOK WHAT I GOT!”– this was more of a post of “Look at what has been done.”

This story is inspirational, heart warming and breaking at the same time, and true. I told the woman who explained it that I had wished I lived closer so that I could hug her because it was the most awesome thing I had heard that happened this Christmas. Instead of watching people post about their fancy-dancy and expensive Christmas gifts, a post was displayed from one person’s act of charity and love.

I just wished that there were more stories like this on the Internet. But there isn’t. The tale of charity had actually lifted away the depressing feelings for myself as I sat here at home all alone with nobody to share with. I received a telephone call from various family members but that was about it. That was my Christmas this year.

Hearing about this story, really got me to think though. It really began to change how I feel about people and society in general. Even though I’ve had some difficult times recently, there are some people out there who are full of love and acts of selflessness rather than hatred and violence.

What do you think about this story? What kinds of charitable things have you done recently?