I had seen her before. A bell-ringer for The Salvation Army sat in her wheel chair about ten feet from the opening and closing automatic doors of King Soopers. It was zero degrees outside. She sat and stared outside as I shopped. I kept looking over at her and wondering. When I checked out, I said hello and asked if I could help. She had called a cab company twice to pick her up. No one had come. I called the cab company and insisted they send someone soon. She had no cell phone.
I won't tell all of the rest of the story, but will adamantly make one point. No one in the store, neither the workers, nor the few customers did anything to help her. When I came back later, she was not by the door, but was wheeling her manual wheel chair across the store. Meanwhile about six employees chatted among themselves, since there were no customers to speak of. If anyone ever looked pathetic and needy, it was Lisa; and Lisa was wheeling herself at a glacial pace across the store. Yes, she has a name, damn it. Lisa had rung the bell all day in freezing cold and could not buy a ride home. Lisa had waiting well over an hour for a cab that never came. Lisa was, as far as I could tell, was abandoned in an upscale King Soopers (near "The Presserve") with well-to-do people rushing in and out, stepping by Lisa.
"As you have done it to the least of these, my brethren, so you have done it to me"--Jesus Christ. Have you heard of him? He was sitting in the cold all day and could not get a ride home.
No, I am not mentioning this for my ego, blast it. I am a stupid sinner, believe me. I am mad as hell about people's neglect of those at the margins of society, those too easy to pass by. These poor souls are made in the image and likeness of God, like it or not. These folks should interrupt our precious schedules, like it or not. And you don't have to do that much to show them some heart. Buy them a hot drink. Ask them their name. If they look like they are distress, see what you can do. You do not have to take them home or be their social worker. But you can do something, anything in love.
Will you please pray for this dear soul and remember, too, those without homes when it is cold out enough to kill?