“In helping others we help ourselves. In helping ourselves we give light and love to the whole world.” ~ Luminita D. Saviuc
I went out to do my walking meditation, and as I was waiting at the crosswalk for the light to turn green, I saw this sweet old lady who seemed to struggle with her heavy shopping bags.
I looked at her, turned off my headphones and with a smile on my face asked:
Excuse me, would you like me to help you?
She looked at me with a strange look on her face and replied:
Are you serious?
To be honest with you, I thought that maybe she got offended since the look on her face immediately changed when I asked her this question. And I was expecting to get a nasty response.
A Helping Hand: A Real Life Story on the Power of Kindness
Do you really want to help me? She asked.
Yes, of course. They look pretty heavy. And it’s always nice to have someone help ease the burden, no?
Do you have to walk a long distance?
No, I am living a few blocks from here, right after that church. She replied while pointing to some building not too far from the place where we were standing.
My neighbor used to help me but he died so now I have to carry them all alone.
It’s okay, I said to her with a big smile on my face. He couldn’t come so he asked me to do it. Here I am.
She smiled. Looked at me a bit surprised, and then asked:
Who sent you? My guardian angel? I bet he sent you. And where did you come from because I didn’t see you.
Oh, I live right up here in this building. I said to her while pointing to my block.
I just came out of the block, so that’s why you didn’t see me... No angel, just someone who is here to help.
Oh, my guardian angel is helping me. I know it. He is always helping me.
Since the light turned green, I took two of the 4 shopping bags she was carrying and we started walking, slowly and peacefully to get on the other side of the street.
Where are you going? She asked me while looking at me with these big and loving eyes.
I am going for a walk.
Oh, I see.
I used to enjoy walking as well.
I remember waking up at 3 a.m. having to walk a few kilometers to reach the train station from the village I used to live as a young girl. And then 3 more kilometers to reach my school. And I would always wear these high heels.
I loved them!
My mom used to tell me to stop wearing those shoes because my feet will hurt when I am old, but thank God I have no problem with that.
I am 76 years old and I feel pretty good.
I should give you some money, she said to me as we were approaching what seemed like her building. I need to give you some money for helping me.
Oh, God. No! I cannot accept this. I am helping you because I felt it was the right thing to do not because I want to be paid.
Please, I do not want to be paid!
If I get money from you, that will be my reward. And I want God to repay me. I am doing this out of love for Him, and not to be paid. So thank you but please…
She looked at me confused but also pleased.
You probably read the scriptures, that’s why you know these things… She said to me while waiting for a reply…
But I did not say anything. I simply smiled and continued walking.
I watch these spiritual shows on tv… and I also watch the news. Do you watch them as well?
No. I don’t watch television.
That’s probably better, she said. The news are so violent and negative.
Yes. I replied. You take in something good when you watch those spiritual programs and then you spoil it all by watching the news…
Yes. You are right. You are right…
They don’t do you any good. They only scare you and make you live in fear.
Well, this is where I live. She said to me as she was reaching out in her purse to get her keys. I will leave the bags at the door and carry one bag at a time upstairs since I live on the 2nd floor and the bags are too heavy for me. I can’t do it all at once.
I can help you carry them all the way up if you feel comfortable about it… and safe.
With all the scary stories and dark news people watch these days, I didn’t feel that comfortable asking her whether she wanted me to take the bag all the way to her apartment door. I didn’t want to scare her or have her think God knows what… But to my surprise she smiled and replied:
Would you do that for me? Really?!
Of course. It’s no big deal.
Oh, you are so kind. I have never met anyone like you in my whole life… Thank you. I will pay you.
She opened the door and before we knew it, we were in front of her door, on the 2nd floor with her holding her wallet in her hands and looking for money, yet again, to offer me.
Thank you for your help.
I want to pay you. So please, accept my money.
No. I really don’t want to be paid. I said to her feeling quite uncomfortable and silly.
This is silly.
I did it out of love and not to be paid.
If we do everything for money, there won’t be anything left to do out of love… for God, for our fellow human being and for love… And I don’t think that is how life ought to be.
Oh… God sent you to me. I know.
May the Blessed Virgin Mary take care of you. For I see you have God in your heart. And I am a Catholic woman and she has been my help and mother for so long… May she help and guide you.
Thank you. May God take care of all of us, I said to her with a smile on my face while getting ready to take the stairs and get started with my walking meditation.
Oh, and I forgot to ask. I said to her while walking down the stairs.
What is your name?
My name is Doina.
Well, nice meeting you Doina. My name is Luminita. God bless you.
And off I went with a big smile on my face, thinking how blessed I was to be given the opportunity to take my focus off myself and place it on another human being.
In helping others we help ourselves
We often think that life is about doing big, bold and grand things. And in our search for grandiosity, we fail to realize that life isn’t so much about doing big things as it is about doing small things with great love.
To me, helping out that sweet beautiful lady was nothing. But to her, it might have been everything. And all because the deed was done with love, not to take credit and boost one’s ego and self-importance, but to help out a fellow human being that seemed to be in need of help.
You too can be of service to those around you. And you don’t have to look for opportunities to help out. They will present themselves to you. And if your eyes, hear and hands will be open, you will discover that in helping others we help ourselves, and in loving others, we show love to ourselves.
As my mentors and spiritual teacher, Dr. Wayne Dyer used to say,
“When you seek happiness for yourself, it will always elude you. When you seek happiness for others, you will find it yourself.” ~ Dr. Wayne Dyer