Staring Addiction in the Face
by Bob Valleau
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One morning on my way to work, I stopped to fill my car with gas. Suddenly, a black truck pulled up next to the pump behind me. A young man, my guess in his twenties, got out of the truck and headed my way.
Because I live in a big city, I'm used to having disadvantaged people approach me from time to time while getting gas or even while leaving a convenience store. But this was different. At first, I assumed he was wanting directions until he asked for money.
"Hey, man. I just coasted in from the highway and need a few dollars for some gas. I was wondering if you could help me."
He took out his wallet and showed me how empty it was. He then said, "See? I was with this girl, and I think she may have stolen my money and credit cards. I'm not sure."
Most people, who are in dire straits, have a hard-luck story to tell. I didn't believe him, of course, but I did feel sorry for him. He was sincere. But there was something else about him.
I gave him a couple of dollars which he gladly took. As I did this, I paused for a few minutes and looked at him. What he said next startled me.
"What's the matter, haven't you ever stared addiction in the face?"
I had to think about that for a moment. Then, I replied, "Yes I have, and it's always sad when I see it."
I knew this young man's desperate need for help went well beyond the two dollars I gave him. His question made me think, though, how some people struggle with addictions. And addictions usually have only one thing in common: destroying what otherwise could be a rewarding life.
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I've always been told, don't give to these people, they will use your money to buy drugs. However, the Lord made it clear to me, "when it is in your power to give, do so, don't judge the situation, leave that to Me", and so whenever I can help I do. Great article.
I also encountered a woman at my local shopping centre carpark.She asked me for 2 dollars, claiming she did not have a bus fare. I looked in my purse, which was empty except for a 5 dollar bill. This I gave her. A) because her demeanour said, I AM TROUBLE, B}Because I felt her desperation.C} Because no doubt, I could walk a mile in her shoes! Thnk you for sharing your story, Veronica