Was running an errand in downtown Kitchener. A young woman stopped at a street corner and started asking passers by if they had spare change. Not this again. Strangely, she wanted water. Coincidently, there was a plastic water bottle already in her hand. She was explaining that the plastic bottle had been fished out of a dumpster. No one was willing to show interest.
I walked by with a mix of curiosity and suspicion. Her story was a new approach to calling out for help that I had not heard before.
She told me her story again. The bottled taken out from a dumpster. She asked a restaurant if she could have it rinsed out but was denied. All she wanted was some clean water to drink. It sounded like a sad story. Don’t know where the water came from.
Okay, for this case, I was willing to contribute. We walked over to Rainbow restaurant to buy a bottle of water. While waiting, I asked if she was likely to need a Jamaican patty as well. A definitely yes was her response.
She told me a little bit of her story. She had broken up with her long time boyfriend. She felt she really needed to end the relationship. She was not treated well. I listened.
Then I did a little experiment. I decided that I would not mention anything about God or that I am a motivated by following Jesus Christ. I gave some advice, paid, encouraged her.
The result of the experiment felt a bit empty. Something good was done. Someone can drink water with a bit more dignity. Someone’s hunger was temporarily satisfied. I was a light. But the young woman didn’t know whose light I was.