Monday, August 15, 2005

Lend a Helping Hand

Grace came to work this morning and was telling me about her daughter who had been in a car accident on the weekend. Her new car, bought only 2 weeks ago, is a complete wreck. The guy driving the other car who hit her head-on was reading a map in his car and not paying attention. Grace said that despite lots of swollen bumps and sore bruises, Lisa is doing fine. Phew...a car can be replaced, a daughter can not!

Now here's what really bothers me about this story: The accident occurred on a busy street here in Brampton but NOBODY bothered to stop to help. Lisa, in complete shock and panic, had to contact her parents to call 911.

The story makes me recall when my sister was in a car accident a few years ago en route from Newfoundland to Ontario. The driver of the car in which she was a passenger had fallen asleep at the wheel. The car rolled down over an embankment off the highway. My sister, unbeknowst to her, was covered in blood from a puncture wound to her skull. She had crawled up onto the highway and was waving her hands frantically for SOMEONE to help but many people still passed by before a car finally stopped to help.

What is wrong with us? I mean, seriously. Are we really so busy? so selfish? so cold? It seems as though we have forgotten to be human. Isn't the soul that separates us from all other living creatures supposed to emit some sort of loving kindness, compassion, sensitivity?

Even ants....(yes, the insects!)...if you study closely, will gather their injured and dead companions and carry them back home. Instinct guides them to do so. God in his wisdom gave us the free will, the choice, to lend that helping hand. Why must we always turn a blind eye? We will all need that same helping hand to guide us through obstacles in life at some point.

Perhaps I'm just not accustomed to the hussle and bussle of city life, where each keeps to him/herself. Where I come from, everybody helped and were more than happy to do so.

Let's not let the craziness of life get to us so much that we forgot our responsibility to one another. Try that homeless guy a coffee, open the door for the mom with the crazy kids and an armful of groceries, and PLEASE stop when you are the first at the scene of an accident even if the thought scares you to death. You will feel better to know that you have lent a helping hand to a friend OR stranger in need.

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