17 April, 2007

Benefit of the doubt

Something strange happened to me tonight...

I went to work, was bored at work, this is all the same as usual. It was after work that it happened. I was about to get into the car, when I heard a small 'excuse me' behind me. I was sitting in the car and turned around and there was a lady there looking quite distraught. I didn't really know what she was talking about, because she was rambling, almost in tears, but she asked me if I knew anyone around who went to a church because she need to get to Albury by 11:30pm and she had not petrol or money, and maybe the church or someone from there would give her some and she could pay then back.. She went on to say something about her spleen or something, and told me to forgive her because she had bumps on her head because her husband used to hit her. She rambled on about how her husband was not going to take their kids anymore and she had to get to Albury before they were split up, and she said she used to go to church, but her husband wouldn't let her, she said she still prayed all the time, and she wanted to go back to church, but as a family with her and her kids. She rambled on a lot, I can't remember exactly what she said. My dad asked her how much money she needed, she said she'd need enough for petrol to get to Albuy.

My dad got out of the car and went to the atm and I stayed with the lady, I was a little freaked out because she was so distraught and on the verge of tears. She apologized for asking for money and said that it wasn't something she'd wanted to do. I asked her if it would help if I prayed for her, she said yes, so I asked her name and asked if I could lay hands on her, then I prayed for God to comfort her and help her and stuff, then Dad came back and handed her some money. I'm not sure how much, it was at least $50, but there could've been more than one note. This is no small feat for my Dad, as no one in my family has a lot of money. We said goodbye to the lady, dad told her she didn't have to return the money, "I don't know where you live, you don't know where I live," she thanked us and was even closer to tears.

Then we drove away.

I really hope this wasn't a scam. If it was, I'd feel down right cheated and angry, but I think, in these sort of situations, it's better to give people the benefit of the doubt. That doesn't mean fork out cash to every stranger that asks for it, but don't just take on the idea that they're lying, they may well be not.

I don't know if it was a scam, it was either real, or very well thought out and played. Maybe she was waiting, an saw my Dad's Mercedes Benz and thought he was rich and would more easily fork out money. Quite the opposite, my dad is anything but rich, the car cost his $200 and is in constant disrepair.

But maybe it wasn't a scam. Maybe it was timed just perfectly. If Dad hadn't parked instead of just picking me up where I stood, if I hadn't been working tonight, if those ladies hadn't been in the way and slowed me down, if my dad wasn't already planning to take out cash... there's a lot of variables in there, but I suppose they could work out to be unlucky variables.

Scam or not, doubt I'll ever know, but it's left me with a strange feeling, and nothing feels quite real at the moment.


Hannah said...

that my friend, is a very intersting story, i think it can be loooked def on the side that is was a scam, but then why would anyone wanna do that, who is that brave?
but if she had real tears, it can be over played, but less tears, could be please i realy am in need, or it could be damn my plan didnt work, really i cant fake cry!!

but then again what you and your father did was the right thing to do, i think, its showing that yes, we are following jesus and becomign more like him, which is great even though u may have little in the bank, like the rest of the world, but you are trusting in god and saying you want me to be more like jesus well here is what im doing!!

well done, it is trully a confusion situation, to be in?
At lest she wanted pray, even if it was a scam u poured the grace of god onto her, without knowing it,but then that could of the made the impact that she needed...

yes i think it is time for me to stop!!

love you emmy :> thankyou for your comments, sorry i havent writen any to you lately, iv just been side tracked!!

Em said...

It was confusing, and strange. And I can't shake the haunting feeling it's left me with.

B.C. said...

I don't know better ways you could have handled it. You did what you believed right, and that's all you could do. You did a good thing. That's more real than lots of other things you or I will do in this life.

Captain Best said...

I have done that a lot. But not with much money. Many people at train stations and on trains ask me for money, and give a lame excuse, but I give it to them anyway. I think, even if they don't intend to use it for what they say, you're still being nice, and doing something for somebody else that you know you will never be earthly rewarded for. Even if giving money, sometimes is bad, I think the act of doing good without reward is a good thing. Hmmm. Contemplation.

Em said...

I am contemplating the sky tonight.... ahh, song lyrics, from which my blog name is derived. Yay.

Someone told me once, that if a homeless person ask for food money, give them food instead. So if you give the person what they actually want instead of money, maybe that's better in some situations. Maybe others not. Contemplation indeed.