Friday, February 1, 2008

Another Coin In The Cup

    My daily walk to the office has me pass down this one block where the homeless congregate. Several weeks ago, upon reaching the end of this block, I noticed a new member to this brigade. An old man, bound to a wheel chair that had  warped wheels and a rotten wooden  board as a backrest. My heart sank at the sight of  him and his misfortune. He sat there lifeless, holding onto a soiled papercup that had a few coins in it. I stopped, reached in my pocket and tossed a few coins in. The sound of the coins woke him from his slumber.He looked up at me, "Bless you!Thank You! Bless you!" he said. The mere emphasis on the "thank you" sent goosebumps up my arms, and a tingling sensation down my spine. I never knew that 50 cents could still buy me such a thrill.

    Weeks passed, he became a permanent fixture on the corner, and my donation, a daily ritual. The other morning, I received a phone call as I was walking and was deeply engaged in the conversation. I walked past the homeless man, and was halted by his cry, "Hey! You forgetting me today?" I stopped, turned, and habitually placed my hand in my pocket and tossed a few coins in his cup. he smiled and drifted back into his slumber.

    After I finished my conversation I was overwhelmed by what had taken place. The whole act of charity had been sabotaged. I was giving out of habit, and he was thankless because it was something he come to expect!

 Gratitude is best expressed  when you receive something beyond your expectation.

Of course, I mused.  I am thankful for each day. Each day is like a coin in my cup. The day does not need to be filled with accomplihments or dreams being fullfilled. Just give me a day, and I can fill it with so many simple small things, that by the nighttime it is too heavy to lift. Just give me a day, where I can say a few "I love Yous" a few "thank Yous" and other mutually uplifting words, and I am in debted to the donor!. Just drop another day in my cup, where I am given minutes to recall what  it felt  like to hold your hand, hold you in my arms,  and look in your eyes. Just drop those minutes in my cup, allowing me another opportunity to add something to your memory! Drop this coin into my cup and I feel like the richest man on earth!

I am this way, because I have never expected how wonderful and fullfilling thesethings can be.

Tomorrow the sun will rise, and when I see it, I will hear the clinking...another coin in my cup!...and I will raise my head and thank the donor!

May you all hear the same jingling!

17 comments:

inafrnz247 said...

May your cup always be overflowing with the coins of life, and may you always find reason to give thanks.  

Thank YOU, for reminding me of the importance of holding that cup high, and graciously accepting all that is offered.

Michelle

robinngabster said...

Mark your words move me...I'll be thinking of YOU tomorrow when I see the sun rise here in Florida!  Jingle jingle...

malagutigrrl said...

Sooooo... is the old man still gonna get his 50 cents?

ally123130585918 said...

Marc may your cup always overflow with the Coins of Life ~ and may the Old Gentelman in his dilapidated old wheelchair still hold his cup out and you give him a few coins ~ I am sure he must appreciate your kindness even if he is taking it a bit for granted ~ Ally x

mpnaz58 said...

Beautifully said!!  Sometimes we make it so hard for ourselves to be grateful because we don't have the latest gadgets or drive the nicest car...but to enjoy a smile, from anyone (or smile at someone), the twinkle in someone's eye, a tear...are all gifts that far outweigh the latest in technology!  Kudos to you for walking to your job!!  That you can enjoy the outdoors is priceless too!
xoxo ~Myra

mariebm56 said...

Stopping by, for some spare change...even if it's just pennies from heaven...Ü
Thank you, kind man!

It amazes me how you find a lesson in everything~
hugs~
Marie

ab45yui said...

I really liked this.  Great post!

ab45yui said...

p.s. I hope you don't mind, I sent it to my family and credited you.  God Bless!

frankandmary said...

I don't appreciate your insightful comments & emails any less over time :-), nor do I expect them.  When I see someone like that man, I want to take them home(character flaw).  
~Mary

lifes2odd said...

Marc, there aren't many around like you. I think we share a similar attitude about life. I don't know if we're just blessed, if we're lucky or if it's taken "necessary loses" or hard times to get to this point. I often think the harder life has been, the more grateful we are -- seems opposite of what it should be doesn't it?

I'll leave you with a quote I found recently that I love...
"The way I see it is you have two choices in life; you can be grateful for everything life has given you or you can be resentful for everything life has done to you. Your degree of happiness is directly proportional to the conviction of your choice." - Enzo D'Alimonte

It's great to hear from you!
Hugs, Martha


nhd106 said...

It's difficult for me to express just how much I enjoy your entries, ya know.   They are not only beautifully written, but they are heartfelt and full of depth.   In many ways, I often relate to what you share.
Thanks for the very thing I cannot express....

Nancy

sunnybethe said...

Yes, each day is a gift.  I am ever so awed at the simplest things or beauty around me.  Thank you for the reminder not to become complacent.

~Bethe~

New S/N...new Journal

rdautumnsage said...

Thank you for your insight! Life is made up of mere moments that are treasures in our very short existance. You my friend are one of those treasures in mine. (Hugs) Indigo

chaispice1023 said...

ah, thank you.  sometimes we need to be reminded to BE grateful for our many blessings.

justaname4me2 said...

Nothing gives me more satisfaction in this world then to give freely, without obligation or expectation. But, I like you, feel sabatoged when my acts of kindness evolve into the concept of expectation. I think it's because I like to believe I do things with no other motive then to make another persons day special. When the other person places a burdon of need or want on my gestures, the dynamics shift.
I love the notion of each day I am also holding a cup that can be filled with random coins. Tomorrow, I shall be more observant of the cha-ching I may not have been listening too..........
Have a wonderful week,
Rebecca

mjgm1954 said...

the first time i read this i did not comment because i felt conflicted in my assesement of it. i liked the second part where you express your joy in being able to say i love you and thank you. but  i did not understand why you took umbridge to the poor old guy expecting your charity.have you read the little prince by antoine st euprey? the fox was tamed by the boy. he had expectations as a result. in a way you tamed this beggar. you led him to believe that you could be counted on. the fact that you were no longer an unknown entity in his life is proof of that. you became special to him . when you passed him by he knew who you were and wanted his 'token' . every day we wake up and expects our tokens from God. if He should forget us, we too would cry out hey you forgetting me today?, june

preciousone25 said...

Just browsing, and found this beautiful entry.... it brought tears to my eyes.  I have to close out for now, but just can't wait to come back and read more of your journal.

Have a great day!!

Joann