Friday, March 11, 2011

Now That's Weird! I'm Giving Money Away to Total Strangers

Dear Yin Weavers,

Once when I was in college a friend asked me to visit her in DC.  The cost of the bus ticket from Towson, Maryland to Washington was exactly $5.  Despite the fact I didn't have a nickel to my name, let alone a five bucks I agreed to visit her that weekend. 

You wouldn't think five dollars was much to sweat, and in the grand scheme of things it wasn't.  I could have borrowed it from someone (in which case I'd have to pay it back).  I could have asked my mother for it (in which case I would have to endure the maternal grilling).  I could have earned it (in which case I would have had a job, which I didn't). 

Or I could have prayed for it.  This is the option I chose.  Then I put the question of how I was going to find the fare in less than a week out of my mind and went about my business as a student.

A few days later I was going to lunch at the school's cafeteria.  Two girls were walking ahead of me.  Suddenly I saw a five dollar floor flutter to the ground at their feet.  At least it seem to be coming from their feet.  I picked it up and called out to them, "Hey, you dropped your..."  But they were long gone.  I sensed an opportunity.  I could claim this as my answer to prayer and scurry on into the lunch line.  Or I could follow the girls (who were passing by the cafeteria) and return the money. 

I chose to follow the girls back to their dorm a few minutes away.  Since I was behind them a little bit by the time I reached them they were in their room.  I knocked on the door.  One of them answered, a girl with dark hair whom I'd not met before. 

"Excuse me," I said, "you dropped this back by the cafeteria.  You or your roommate."  I waved the money in the air.

"No, I didn't," she replied.  "Hey, Anna (I made that up, I don't remember either of their names)," she called over her shoulder, "did you lose some money?" After a moment of silence the answer came back negative.  "Nope, it's not ours!  Sorry!"  And with that she shut the door on me. 

So I got my answer to prayer, and believe me...the answer wasn't the five dollars.  The answer was a sort of combo of "God loves you, Rose.  You are not alone" and the chorus from one of my favorite Stones songs: 

You can't always get what you want
you can't always get what you want
you can't always get what you want
but if you try sometimes you just might find
you get what you need.

You might think praying is a little too lazy to qualify as trying, but to a woman who has lost her job, or a man who is homeless and mentally ill, or a kid, say who was so abused at home growing up the thought of trusting in a loving God is as foreign as trusting a mother for five bucks...well, trust me, praying isn't all that lazy.  Sometimes finding the courage to say, "help me" is like lifting a two ton weight. 

I can't imagine how many silent prayers are out there right now for just a little help.  Just enough to prime the pump of hope.  Which is why I've decided to become a Kindness Investor for the week of April 10-16 right here in Chicago.  A Kindness Investor is someone who follows in the footsteps of Reed Sandridge who for 365 days (200 of which were jobless) gave $10 a day to a total stranger and then blogged about it at The Year of Giving.  Reed says anyone can do this, and I'm inclined to agree.  I mean, how hard can it be for a child of the sixties?  It's sort of like panhandling in reverse. 

I am sooooooooo looking forward to being someone's answer to prayer!  I  hope you'll follow my progress that week as I post my giving adventures on Reed's blog.  I'll send you friendly reminders, or maybe you'll just go ahead and start following his blog right now, or maybe you'll go here and like his page.  Or maybe you'll just cut to the chase and be a Kindness Investor yourself. 

Because you know it's weird to walk up to seven total strangers and hand away money.  But you know what's weirder?  Thinking money makes you rich. 



  1. I love this Rose-my greatest gift is my family, and I am also grateful for the deep healing I see my clients experience. It is divine!

  2. Can't wait to follow what happens, how beautiful!!!

  3. This is right up your alley, isn't it, Gabby?! :-) Spread the word!

    Hi Ellen! Nice to hear from you! Yes, isn't it wonderful to watch the miracle of healing in our clients? It's what I love most about my work--and one of my greatest treasures!


  4. This sounds got my wheels turning :)

  5. Yeah, Maria! Did you check out Reed's blog?

  6. This was a lovely blog.

  7. My family and I put our trust in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, when
    tribulations and trials come I know God uses others to Bless those less
    fortunate, but I just feel like..............
    I CAN'T go on by myself anymore!!!!!... I feel like there is a lot on
    me. My husband wanted to take his life, but I was able to encourage him
    not to give up! My husband was let go on a job he loved, right before
    his 90 day evaluation on April 3rd. It
    took him 3.5 years to get a job, since both of our job losses in 2008.
    I was a store manager at Sears and my husband was a warehouse manager
    at Sears, we both made good money together, until our store closed. My
    husband finally gets a real job, only to be let go from it for no
    reason. My husband worked at temp places, but nothing permanent ever
    happened. We thought since my husband was Blessed with this job in Jan
    2012 that this would be the job, but it did not last(I still say it was
    a Blessing whether it lasted or not.'..The Lord giveth and the Lord
    taketh away)... we can't pay bills, get toiletries/necessities, things
    for our girls, etc...The Lord must have something else in store for my
    Have been Blessed to get expedited food stamps, so now we can
    eat...Praise God....Have three girls that have been through alot
    their house taken in 2010 and had to move to a bad area, but Blessed to
    have a home.
    My husband said he did everything right...just don't understand? Girls
    have no church clothes,
    shoes, or enough underclothes, neither do I, but
    I don't care about me...we were trying to get stuff for them gradually.
    I'm hurt right now been praying and praying and asking for God's high
    favor for my family. My husband is trying hard to find a job. God's
    high favor will get us a financial Blessing, as well as a spiritual
    one, and right now our spirits are broken. I would love to thank you
    for all your kindness and giving. My family and I are also cheerful
    givers, so I know the high that you feel when you know you have done
    something special for someone, it is a great feeling, so I want to
    thank you for being in the cheerful givers is an awesome
    place to be! If you do not have it in your heart to Bless my family at
    all, I still thank you for being a giver, we need more true givers in
    this world...Praise God he gave my family and I a giving spirit. If you
    would like to be a Blessing to us, I will let the amount be between you
    and God...we are GRATEFUL for whatever God Blesses us with:)

    My email is

    My husband's and I anniversary is May 16th...married 12
    yes!!!!!....Praise God!!!!

    God Bless,
    The Lamb Family