We hear stories of people coming across underprivileged individuals who just need a little bit of grace. Sometimes that happens at a homeless shelter, or others are random encounters.
For Memphis, TN native Matt White, it happened inside his local Kroger grocery store. While he was shoping in the store, White was approached by 16-year-old Chauncy Jones. Jones kindly asked if he could help White carry his groceries, in exchange for some glazed donuts.
What ended up happening after these first words is truly beautiful. Below is the story that White posted to Facebook, which since posting inspired millions:
“I just met the most inspiring person ever. His name is Chauncy Jones. He’s a 16 year old from Memphis. He had taken the bus at 9:00 at night to get to the Kroger on Highland as he called it. He approached me while I was shopping for produce asking if he could help me carry my grocery bags to my car in exchange for buying him a pack of glazed donuts. This kid looked like he had been turned down 100 times. He looked ashamed, hungry and broken. In my heart I screamed a loud “yes!”, but to him I just chuckled and said, “yeah dude, we’ll get you some donuts.”
I asked him if he was by himself and he said that he had come all the way out here with the hopes of someone buying him something to eat because he and his mother had nothing at home. He had no phone, a bus pass, and he was depending on the graces of a stranger to feed him within the hour before the bus left. So, needless to say, he and I went on a shopping spree.
We had so much fun! We got cereal and chips and frozen veggies, pizzas, Cheetos, melons and pasta, peanut butter, milk, soap, tooth brushes, just a little bit of everything. All the while we talked and he told me how he makes straight A’s in school and is trying to get a job to help his mom pay rent. This kid was amazing. Chauncy kept calling himself poor, but he told me that one day he was gonna be wealthy and own his own businesses so that he could help other people in his neighborhood and buy them groceries like me. I was in awe.
I gave him a ride home so that he didn’t have to take the bus and when we got to his house I was truly humbled. He wasn’t kidding. He and his mom had nothing. They didn’t even have beds or furniture. They were sleeping on pads made out of sleeping bags, they had two lamps and nothing in their fridge. Nothing. His mother was so sweet but very fragile. I couldn’t tell what it was, but she had some sort of physical and/ or mental disability that made her shake and made walking difficult. I thought I was going to cry.
As we unpacked the food into their kitchen, you could see the hope coming back into Chauncy’s eyes. He knew he wasn’t going to be hungry. He looked like a kid again. As I was leaving I gave him a hug and told him how much God loved him and that he was going to grow up to be an incredible man. I’ll never forget that hug. It meant more to me than any possession I have.”
White’s Facebook post went viral quickly. So, he decided to create a GoFundMe page to help Jones and his mother get some of the bare necessities. Well, in the kindness of other strangers’ hearts, the GoFundMe campaign was able to bring in over $300,000 for Jones and his mother!
White’s personal attorney is helping Chauncy and his mother handle all the funds.
This is a story of compassion, grace, humility, care and love. Its message is priceless and something we can all be reminded of so share it today!
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