Wayne’s Story – The Gift of Perspective

I was mindlessly scrolling through my Facebook feed last week when I saw it…

A friend had posted a letter from a local high school teacher requesting help for a student named Wayne.

A month ago, at only 16 years old, Wayne would wake up each weekday morning alone in his apartment, get himself ready for school, show up and do his work, and take the city bus to a local hospital. His mother was his only family and she had become terminally ill. So he would go see her each day after school. After visiting hours were over, after dark, he would then take the city bus back to his empty apartment.

Weekends were no better. He spent them alone or at his mother’s side.

Things got worse.

His mother passed away on November 16.

He is now alone, scared and facing hardships that few of us can imagine.


How often I lose perspective.

It’s so easy to get caught up in our own worlds, our own problems. It’s not that our fears, disappointments, pains or frustrations aren’t valid just because someone else seems to have it worse off than us, but perspective helps us shift from a place of negativity to one of gratitude.

I emailed Wayne’s teacher and asked how I could help.

She responded by saying that she was so overwhelmed at how many people had offered support that she set up a Go Fund Me page to help Wayne as he moves forward in his life.

So I went to the Go Fund Me page.

Are you sitting down?

More than 400 people had donated over $24,000 in only 2 days.


How often I lose perspective.

It’s so easy to get caught up in all the bad things happening in the world. It’s not that there aren’t legitimate fears and concerns that we must address, but perspective helps us remember that there’s just as much good as bad.

This fund won’t take away Wayne’s pain, loneliness or the many other challenges that he will continue to face. But it does let him know there is a supportive community around him that believes in him and wants to see him not only survive, but thrive.


There’s a whole lot of talk, a whole lot of complaining, a whole lot of “thoughts and prayers”, but inspired action is what changes the world.

As Pope Francis said, “You pray for the hungry. Then you feed them. That’s how prayer works.”

I have a favor to ask. Call it a request, an invitation or a challenge.

At some point in the next two weeks, take a moment to help someone in need without any expectation of acknowledgement, praise or tax deduction. I’m not talking about making a monetary donation to a non-profit. That serves an important purpose in society but it doesn’t offer as much perspective as helping a particular person or family.

It could be a homeless person on the street, a local retail clerk that gets paid minimum wage, or someone you see that just seems like they could use a little help.

If you don’t feel comfortable approaching a complete stranger, ask a teacher, school administrator, nurse, doctor, law enforcement officer or religious leader if they know of someone in need. They will know. I promise you, they will know!

Then email me (or leave a comment on the blog – it can be anonymous) with your stories of giving so that I may then compile and share them with you over the next two weeks.

Don’t worry, I won’t use your name.

Because it’s not about you. It’s not about me. It’s not about patting ourselves on the back. It’s about


It heals.

It inspires.

It opens our hearts to give and receive more love.

And I’ve yet to meet a person that couldn’t benefit from more love.


1 Comment

  1. Beverly on December 7, 2015 at 5:15 pm

    Wayne’s story is like all those sermons that Pastor was preaching “only to me”, making me feel like I needed to wear combat boots because he was always stepping on my toes. This morning when I was in my quiet time, I realized there truly is no “I” in team and no one wants to hear you “bitchandmoan” about how hard it is for you, because its not about YOU!, its about the team. And then Wayne’s story comes into my email to solidify that I need to start looking inward, stop bitching outward and do something that make something better and not worse. I need to encourage when no one is looking or better yet when someone is looking, so hopefully someone else will do the same. I need to bite my tongue and not use it as a weapon of meanness. So I will “donate” a smile, kind word and thank you. Family is safe, friends, well they are friends, but then there are those who challenge you. I will let them know by a simple word or thank you, I am glad to have them in my life. I bet the smile I receive from them in return will feel awesome and very rewarding all by itself.

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