Saturday Trains and the West End

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Today’s train ride was quite an adventure. My son and I loaded a bag and a box filled with 20 ziplocs filled with food, water, and a few snacks, essentially a meal. We rode the train to Dallas to hand out food to hungry people.

At Union Station, I put us on a train going the wrong way, and ended up at a really rough station. A man in a hoodie followed us every time we moved, we put our phones away and stood closer to the crowd of people. We didn’t board the train until after he did, and we chose a different car.

We finally made it to the West End, and we didn’t have to go far. My son set the box down on a bench at the train station, and immediately, people came. I watched my son as he interacted with people, a lady gave him a hug and he was amazed at the questions people asked. “What group are you with?” “You aren’t with anyone? you are just doing this?” “You aren’t charging?” My son doesn’t talk a lot, “No, we just wanted to do something nice.”

A lady came to us and asked why we were handing out food. She said it was the Lord’s work but she couldn’t do it any more because God wanted those people to help themselves. A lady approached us timidly and asked if she could have a bag, I handed it to her, and she said, “God is going to bless you.” The woman was obviously a prostitute, but she was hungry and she was kind. I smiled and patted her hand, “He has, now we want to bless you.” The older lady said, “What have you done for God, miss?” The lady was offended and an argument started, it broke my heart. I thanked the lady and moved my son away, hoping the others would have nothing more to talk about.

All of our bags were gone within 10 minutes. 20 hungry people received meals and smiles, and all of them said thank you, many thanked God that we had come. As we boarded the train, several pointed, a few waved. My son was quiet. He was confused by the people that approached that did not appear homeless, he was saddened by the older woman cramming her beliefs down people’s throats. The woman had been very angry that we didn’t have literature in the bags. I smiled and thanked her for the suggestion.

“Ma’am I appreciate your suggestion, we just wanted to come do something nice and show the love of Christ and show people that there is good in the world. Sometimes people just need to know that someone cares about them. That’s all this is about.”

My son said he couldn’t describe the feeling but it was amazing to be part of that moment in each person’s life. It was great to show them a glimmer of hope for today. I don’t know what their story is, I don’t know how they got where they are or what keeps them there. I just know they were hungry and we had food to give.

He walked away remembering two things the most: 1) the woman who hugged him tightly and said thank you 2) the man who stopped and prayed and thank God for sending him food.

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About Andi

This chapter in my life is called, "Managing Millennials". People always say that I have a way with words, and that I am great at managing Millennials. The secret truth to my success? I worked at a public high school. I was an educator that specialized in behavior and building relationships. So what happens when the sweet little kids that inspired me to sponsor clubs, put in extra hours and spend my own money all enter the workforce???? They drive you crazy! I can help! I understand why these participation trophy earning young adults are driving you crazy in the work place. I understand that the fact that we are inheriting a technology talented pool of workers that sit at their desk with ear buds in their ears and celebrate medicocricy in the name if effort. I understand that you are not used to emojis and GIFs in business communication, and that you don't want to stand around on a break discussing memes, vines, YouTube epic fail videos and what you binge watched on Netflix. I once told my students that they would learn to follow my rules because I refused to be miserable for the next 1488 hours of my life. Ninety percent of the time... They did. Now, I tell my millennials that same thing, "Welcome to the workforce. There are policies and procedures in place that will help us get along for the next 2080 hours of our lives." Welcome to my blog, "Let The Managers Say Amen."

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