Pay It Forward – To A Bell Ringer

I saw my first Salvation Army Bell Ringer last week.

I noticed something as I was walking to the door of the store……..most people looked down and didn’t acknowledge the bell ringer in any way. Hmmm.. This is not to be critical as I know I have done the same thing in the past. But why?

What is going through our minds as we walk towards the bell ringer??

1) I don’t have any cash on me and I am so embarrassed.

2) I put something in the kettle at the last stop and now this guy is going to think I’m cheap.

3) Maybe if I don’t look him in the eye he won’t notice me.

What struck me this time is why not acknowledge the person, give him/her a smile, and wish them a good day? Many of these people are volunteers or working for a small amount of money, standing out in the freezing cold (at least here in MN) to help a wonderful organization and are proably extremely bored.

It’s okay if you don’t want to give, can’t give or just don’t have cash at this time. But I think the person standing out there deserves our smiles and best wishes.

So I changed my attitude this time and said, ‘Hi, I can’t believe it is that time of year already!” He chuckled and we chatted a bit. I didn’t have any cash and I didn’t make an apology for it. I just acknowledged his presence and I was rewarded with him telling me to “Have a Blessed Day”! Can’t beat that.