When we see someone suffering, it’s tempting to say, “That’s too bad” and move on. It’s the easy thing. It’s what we do all the time without thinking. If we don’t get involved, it’s unlikely that anyone will confront us about it. After all, it’s not “our” problem, right? I don’t want to do that anymore.That comment hit close to home for me. Not because I'm not guilty of it - I am - but because of a time when I was on the other end. ABout eight years ago, we lived in southcentral Nebraska. Between our house and our neighbor's was a scruffy, ugly row of half-dead bushes. The neighbor asked if we minded if he dug them out. Of course we didn't and Dave offered to save him some muscle-work by pulling them with the pick-up - a method, by the way, that Dave had used before and knew how to accomplish safely. They hooked a chain onto the hitch on the BACK (that will be significant later in this story) of the pick-up, wove the other end of the chain through the base of the first bush then drove SLOWLY FORWARD until the bush was pulled up, roots and all. Repeat process for every bush in the row - each time facing safely forward and applying the gas in moderation. Within an hour or two, we had a bush-free yard and happy neighbors.
Fast forward a couple days: Another neighbor across the street - we'll call him Mr. Miller in honor of the beverage he had been consuming when he hatched this plan - decided he no longer cared for the large evergreen shrub in front of his house and he was going to borrow Dave's tree-removal method. Let me help you visualize this. The bushes on our property looked much like the picture on the left.
If you want further encouragement and proof of how far a small gesture can go, check out A Secret Gift by Ted Gup. I learned about this true story from an article in the New York Times and it's now sitting near the top of my TBR pile.