I’m on my second round of a 29 day giving challenge and some interesting things happen over and over. So for those of you that have no idea what a giving challenge is, let me explain. For 29 days I am challenged with giving something (time, money, support, presence, donations, kind words, attention, you name it) to someone else. The obvious challenges occur which are getting busy and forgetting, not knowing what to give, feeling like I don’t have anything revolutionary to offer, lack of inspiration, time and so on. What I didn’t expect to come up against were people who block giving because they can’t receive.
Today I stopped off at the bread store doing myself a little gift of picking up stuff that make kids lunches a lot easier when the lady beside me was explaining she forgot her debit card. While I was telling the staff what I wanted I was listening to the lady beside me. She was calling her husband to see if he could see the card at home. Awesome! I thought, here is a chance for me to meet today’s giving challenge spontaneously which is my favourite thing. I love being a conduit that brightens a strangers day.
I quickly checked her total and it was all of $7.50. When she asked the staff if they could set her bread to the side I stepped up and said oh let me buy that for you. I’ve forgotten my card before so I know how you feel and I’m happy to cover it.
‘No no no, no she said and started shaking her head and backing away from the counter. I can’t let you do that. Thank you very much it’s fine, I live close by I’ll just walk home.” Are you sure? I said, I really don’t mind, its no big deal. “oh no I can’t let you do that”
So I gotta tell you, this didn’t feel great. I felt like I was offering something inappropriate and I felt foolish standing there with my debit card out. “OK” I said because you can’t force kindness on people if they are determined to block it. I watched her leave and then turned to my order to pay. I was feeling embarrassed and a little stunned.
The clerk gave me my total and then said “I think what you tried to do was really kind so i’ve discounted your total by 25%.” Thats how fast the energy of giving made it’s way back to me. “thank you so much” I said and the clerk beamed. The embarrassment was gone and so was that horrible feeling of blocked energy, the rejection that I felt.
So here is what I’ve learned from my giving challenge;
I’m not sure what went through that women’s mind when I offered to pay for her bread. I don’t know if she felt embarrassed, had a belief you don’t accept help from strangers, pride or what. There was only me and her in the store. Two women. All I know is she blocked herself. I saw her when I drove away, a couple blocks up walking home. Sometimes its really up to us if we are going to do things the hard way. But know that God/universe/source answers prayers through earth angels more often than not. Its up to you if you open the door.