Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Blessing Bag

I like Target. It's one of my favorite stores and I generally go once a week for this or that. The nearest Target to us is about 10 minutes away in Eagle Rock. The shopping center is set up a little awkwardly and there is only one way to exit if I want to head toward the freeway to return home. We've lived in this area for almost a year now, and almost every time I leave Target and turn onto Colorado Blvd I see the same homeless man sitting at the intersection with a sign that reads "hungry, need work." You don't see a lot of homeless people in this area, so he stood out to me from the very beginning. I get stopped at the light there, just a few feet from him quite frequently, and yet, I've never given him anything. There have been times when I randomly had an apple or some other snack in my car that I wanted to give him, but I was just too scared. Not scared that he would do something bad, just scared of the awkward encounter I guess. But there is something about this man that makes me want to do something. Every time I pass him I feel it. Since we're moving in a few months, I've decided that I can't have let a whole year go by and not do anything so I'm going to do something like this:

It's called a blessing bag and I got the idea from HERE

I'm thinking of including water & snacks, a toothbrush/toothpaste, some warm socks, Chapstick, a small amount of money, and some other things. It may seem silly, but I like this idea better than just throwing some cash at him, literally! People throw cash out the window into the street for him. He hobbles over (one knee doesn't seem to bend) and awkwardly bends over to pick it up. I'm hoping that I can include things that he will find useful. I know it's not going to change his life, but I'm hoping it will improve his day. 

I told Ryan about my plan (and I'm blogging about it) so hopefully I will feel a little more accountable and really do it. The idea of actually giving this bag to the man scares me (what do I say?), but I will feel so guilty if we move and I never did anything. 


  1. This is the best Idea about this subject I've ever heard! Fantastic, Missy! I would definitely do it. And now I'm having visions of making several of things bags and having them on hand in the car "just in case."

    Dont' worry if it's awkward or weird. Just hand him the bag and say "Merry Christmas" with a smile and walk away. Honestly, it will be enough. :) Good luck!

  2. I love it! When I lived in SLC I used to shop at Costco. There were always homeless people out in front of Costco so whenever I went shopping there I would buy a few extra food items and then give them out as I was leaving. I would rather give food then money. It's a great idea Missy! If you wait until Christmas time I'll go with you so you're not scared!

  3. We just made a bunch of these for FHE this week!!!! Olivia has been asking about homeless people a lot lately, so we thought it would be the perfect time to teach her about giving and gratitude for our MANY blessings. I always hate to give out cash, so we included $5 gift cards to McDonalds among the loot. I keep 3 in my car at a time and have 5 or 6 extras in the garage for re-stocking. We're hoping to give them all out by June!!

  4. "Verily I say unto you, in as much as ye have done it unto one of these the least my brethren, ye have done it unto me!

    Do It Missy, I proud of you!