When Carmen Mendez went out to eat at Raising Canes in Anaheim, California, she witnessed a homeless woman, who appeared to be on the verge of starving, asking the customers leaving if they could spare any leftovers.
“I debated posting this picture, but considering that today many of us are gonna be thankful for what we have and are gonna be spending it with those we love, eating very yummy food, I changed my mind,” Carmen wrote. “I didn’t know my boyfriend had captured this moment. A couple of day’s ago we went to eat late at night @raisingcanes and as we waited for our order, I saw this homeless lady walk in asking people that were throwing away their leftovers if she could have them.”
As she watched this older homeless woman ask people for their leftovers before they threw them in the trash, again and again she was ignored, and it quietly broke Carmen’s heart.
“Not one person said yes, they all ignored her and threw it away… it broke my heart…”
Carmen has spent time volunteering to help the homeless, so she understood and could empathize with the struggle and pain the older homeless woman was feeling.
“I have been volunteering with the homeless now for many years, I hold them all with so much love. So I told Fred if I see her before we are done eating, I will give her my food. I looked for her as we were getting ready to leave and couldn’t find her… I felt sad knowing all the rejection she had that night searching for a warm meal.”
She couldn’t find the homeless woman as they were finishing eating, but as she went to throw away what remained of her meal, she heard a tender and quiet voice behind her.
“As I was gonna throw away my leftover chicken strip and like 5 fries I heard a very quiet voice ask me if I had anything left. I turned around and it was her… I gave her my food and watched her sit and eat it…..but something didn’t feel right… I felt like a horrible human being feeding her my leftover chicken strip… she deserved so much more…”
Rather than letting this woman remain hungry while being met with cold stares as she ate just a few french fries, Carmen decided to buy the homeless woman an entire meal, and it moved her to tears.
“So I bought her a whole meal… she deserved to eat a hot meal. When I ordered the meal I asked the employee for a huge favor: to please not kick her out as we waited… I could already see the disgust on people’s faces as she sat at the table eating the leftovers I had. She was getting ready to get up and leave when I surprised her with this meal… the look on her face said it all… I have never felt something like this… pure, real gratitude.”
“That hug she gave me was like a hug I had never felt… those tears she shed were felt deep in my heart… I held her tight and let her let it out…I just held her. And that is a moment I will never ever forget. So next time you judge a homeless person think twice… not all of them are homeless because of a drug addiction or because they are lazy.”
Thousands of hearts have been moved by Carmen’s compassion for the homeless woman.
“Bless you….this picture made me cry,” wrote Lynda M.
“This is so amazing and so sweet. 💜” commented Wendy F.
“Thank God we still have good hearted people like you.. your story brought tears to my eyes.. thank you….👑🙏🙏🙏” wrote Yshaun W.
“Lady you did the right thing the bible says you may entertain angels unaware you never know who God sends your way,” commented John C.
“God’s tender spirit from within her heart spoke to you in a quiet voice just before you threw away your meal,” wrote Jeff H.
“Thank you so much…..I’ve been homeless…..it was the hardest thing to ever come back from….I wish I had met someone like you when I was homeless….people treated me like I was less than human… It was horrible…. thank you for being you…” wrote G.T.
“With tears I read this… When I was in LA I would take a to go when I left so it would be hot and gave both my leftovers and the to go [to the homeless] so they would have another meal,” wrote Mary R.
You are Loved.
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