Tanya Prewitt-White, a sports and health psychology professor at Adler University, and her husband, Courtney White, who is the Physical Education department chair at Downer's Grove, were returning from the funeral of Courtney's grandmother. They were taking the train home from Chicago O'Hare when they spied a homeless man sleeping in a wheelchair.
“We were getting off at Irving Park, and I had grabbed some money to give him,” Prewitt-White, said. “My husband had the same idea, so he already had money out to give him. I handed my additional money to my husband, and he just slipped it all into the gentleman’s bag, and we walked off.”
“We were just trying to pay it forward,” she continued. “My husband and I talk about this all the time — about our own self-righteousness, about how it’s easier to become hardened and not make eye contact, or smile at people who appear homeless, because then you don’t have to look pain and suffering in the face. It’s definitely been a journey for the two of us.”
|Courtney White and his wife, Tanya Prewitt-White
And to be honest, I think we're tired of all the explicit, lurid, shocking and scandalous news that pervades our media and social conscience. I don't know about you but they leave me feeling contaminated, in a way; almost as if I am looking at the world through a dirty and soiled veil. So, I find that the smiles I receive from strangers, in return to the ones I give, are the highlights of my day. A smile and a hello, while looking someone in the eye, can validate that they were worth your attention; especially since like Jack Stankovic said, we are increasingly becoming zombie-like, detached, and aloof as we stare at our electronic entrapments.
It doesn't take much to change a person's entire outlook on life. We all need to feel connected; that we matter, and that we are not alone and won't go unnoticed. There is nothing that could make a human being feel more lonely or without worth. And that's why Courtney White and his wife, Tanya, obeyed their spiritual prompting. That simple act of kindness and charity shines forth as an example for us all.
Although they did not do it for the attention it has garnered, their fellow passenger Jack Stankovic felt that their act should be honored. And he recorded the reaction of the homeless man in the wheel chair -- because he woke him up to tell him. “I didn’t want him to pull his water bottle out and drop [the money],” he said. “I stepped off and stood on the platform and watched through the window. He had this look on his face like, ‘Why?’ Confused why anyone would do that. You can’t put into words the feeling I had that day. It’s like everything was right in the world for a brief moment.”
You're exactly right, Jack. Things on earth were perfect for a moment; two people shared their heart and soul with another, and at that exact point of time there was peace and good will between men ... just as our Lord intended.
Thank you to The Blaze for this story, and I hope it blesses you and inspires you today to do your own small gesture of love towards another human being.
Luke 6:38 "Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you."