Given the constant stream of negative events that have happened over the last year and into the new, we are blinded by the shadow of it all. We wear it like an invisible cloak that drags us down. Our mindsets are set on a downward spiral and it’s hard to keep a positive attitude. It is so important in these times to remember that good things still happen. A world still exists where people go out of their way to help the less fortunate, or where little girls give away their cherished birthday money to a stranger in need.
An elderly woman named Evelyn Topper was reminded of these selfless acts recently.
A Hard Life
Evelyn was spending the day with her granddaughter, Mikayla Gounard. They visited a local coffee shop and enjoyed possibly a beverage each and maybe even a pastry treat. Upon their arrival home, Evelyn made the devastating discovery that her wallet was no longer with her. This hit her hard. Never mind the cash, all her credit, and medical cards had been in that wallet. This realization weighed down on Evelyn until the very next day she received a surprising call that her wallet had been found.
Enter Sean Curry. A man of little means who has been homeless for the past 5 years. One can only imagine (if even at all) the hardships he’d been through. You might not expect much from people living like Sean as they live a hard life. Yet, one day, Sean stumbled across Evelyn’s wallet in a dumpster. According to Sean, his friend had egged him on to use the cards in the wallet he found. But, the wonderful man chose not to! He started making arrangements to return the wallet to its rightful owner. For all the reasons Sean had to use the cards, his reasons for returning them was that he was raised honestly and that he has a heart. Evelyn was over the moon with relief and happiness and celebrated the return of her wallet, calling it a ‘mitzvah’.
What is a Mitzvah?
Within Judaism, a common term is “mitzvah”. Its meaning is for a good deed done without the expectation of being rewarded or benefitting at all from your good deed. Sean performed a mitzvah in Evelyn’s eyes because he went out of his way to return her wallet just because he knew it was the right thing to do.
While a true mitzvah is performed without expectation of reward. Although, sometimes, the laws of the universe come into play and we all know how it goes… one good deed can lead to another. Furthermore, this brings us to chapter two of this heartwarming story.
Birthday Money Turned into Selfless Gift
Indeed, Evelyn’s granddaughter had a previously arranged drive-by party for her 12th birthday.
Instead of presents, this selfless tween asked for donations to a charity she hadn’t yet decided on. Needless to say, Sean helped her with her decision making. On her special day, they gussied up their driveway with balloons and all the birthday trimmings. Everyone prepared for the birthday drive-by precession.
Each of her friends drove by and doused her in birthday songs, hoorahs, and a couple of socially deprived giggles. Accordingly, thanks to the lockdown, Mikayla had to be creative. She had a donation basket along with a picture of Sean into which they placed their donations. She chose to give this money to a man she barely knew. This birthday money, which could’ve bought her many gifts, yet she chose to give it to Sean.
Birthday Money Goes a Long Way
Most people her age would find it difficult to part with such money if the thought even crossed their minds. Mikayla truly is an inspiration for our future. Mikayla’s birthday money managed to reach several hundred dollars and she gave it all to Sean. The heartwarming gesture from such a young girl made Sean feel, admittedly, humbled.
This was a truly uplifting exchange of good deeds for Evelyn, Mikayla and Sean. The like of which, none of them expected. Not everything we do needs to benefit us directly. Remember what they say, good things happen to good people so let’s strive to perform more mitzvahs!