Test of FATE & FAITH
My good friend Luke shared the following two unlikely stories that make you wonder why we do what we do; these are his words:
One morning I was on a subway station getting ready for a journey from NYC to Elmhurst Hospital. An obviously homeless guy, who happened to be a Black man, (this is important since my friend is white and race relations are what they are) and who was limping severely, asked me for a subway token so he could get to a hospital. I told him that I was going to a hospital in Queens and would help him get there. He said OK and I paid his fare and sat with him on the long ride. We talked about all kinds of things and it was obvious his life on the street had taken a toll on him. Like every person on earth, we had somethings in common and the trip went fairly smoothly and quickly. He refused to take a cab and we slowly walked the short distance from the subway to the ER. He thanked me, we shook hands and will probably never see each other again.
Sometimes, I look back on that episode and wonder if it was a test; if this man was real, and if someone or something wanted to see if I would live up to what it appeared to others I stood for. My other thought was maybe I was put there because I would. Fate or Faith? Do you think other commuters found this scene strange?
Another time, I was on a subway platform very early in the morning and looked over to see that I was standing next to two of my pro basketball heroes, Bill Russell (Boston Celtics legend)and Dave De Busschere (Knicks legend), both long retired by that time. They were talking and even though I nearly jumped out of my shoes, I did not want to be a slobbering fan. I said good morning, as did they, and I sat quietly next to them on the train. We even exchanged "have a nice day" at the end of the ride. They actually seemed relieved that the early hour made them less likely to be bothered.
It was a thrill nevertheless, particularly seeing Mr. Russell. I fashioned my game after his, and to some extent my world view. He was not just a ball player, he was a force for equality, civil rights, fairness and for doing the right thing. He used fame in the game to help others. And, he was very adamant that once equality was recognised, it was not a free hand out, people needed to earn their way in this world. Fate and Faith! Something to live by.
Luke has good Karma and it is something we can on build on for this life and the next. So the next time someone looks vaguely familiar - say hello or smile - it might just make their day.
Be abundantly well.
Photo via Stock Xchng: Air Movement by Aurelio S