September 12, 2007

Credit Card Fraud Inspires Me.

Today's trip to the library was extra magical. The quick walk turned into adventure after adventure for my small boy in his big world. As soon as we stepped outside, we spotted a big, shiny, red firetruck parked in front of a hydrant at the end of our street. Ezra started yelling and waving and squealing as three firemen hopped out of the truck. They were checking all of the hydrants in our neighborhood- opening them up so that water gushed out with so much force that it completely traversed the road and drenched the yard across the street from where it sat planted in the ground like a big, red thumb. The firemen were busy, working hard, so they didn't see Ezra's desperate attempts to catch their attention. We were still a ways up the street from where they were.

They hopped back in their truck and pulled away. Ezra didn't have time to feel sad, however, because a big, fat, gluttonous garbage truck pulled up the street just then. We marveled at the size (and smell) of the thing and passed through it's rumbling shadow. We waved. The garbage men waved. Ezra beamed.

Then we saw a small, yappy dog. Yip! Yip! Ezra turned to look at me and said, with hands turned upwards in a questioning manner, "Who Dat?!" I found this quite humorous.

We came to another little intersection in the neighborhood and we were just crossing through it, when the firetruck showed up again. Another hydrant to check. Ezra again started waving so desperately that I thought his arm might fall off.

This time, the three firemen jumped out of the truck and spotted my little guy right away. They smiled and waved back almost as enthusiastically as Ezra was waving to them. I stopped and turned the stroller so that Ezra could see what they were doing to the hydrants, and the firemen played it up for Ezra- acting like the water was knocking them off of their feet over and over again.

Ezra laughed hysterically. I giggled. We smiled and waved some more and continued on our way to the library.

We picked out some new books, and brought them to the checkout. I paid my 40 cent fee for the last book that I turned in late. (Oops.) Then we played at the park for awhile before heading back home.

The sky over our heads was a shocking electric blue.


Chris called a bit later to tell me that the bank called and told him they thought someone had been using our credit card fraudulently. There were 4 separate transactions that came through today for $100-$200 each. Each transaction was from different grocery stores. Grocery stores that we don't shop at.

The credit card company said someone probably had a fake card. Chris and I don't use that card anymore- two weeks ago Chris cut up the cards and threw them away. Someone maybe found the cards and pieced them together and got the number off of them and then ordered a new card or something? I don't know. We canceled the cards and just have to fill out some paperwork.

I don't know- I am not upset or angry about it at all. Maybe I'm just incredibly naive, but I can't help thinking that there might be someone out there who has groceries in their house right now for the first time in a really long time. Heck, if our money helped buy someone some FOOD, some GROCERIES, then I really couldn't be happier about it, you know?

I will never really know just what that money was spent on. All I really DO know is that I want so desperately to live a life that overflows with generosity and compassion, a life with doors wide open- where all that I have is not really mine- but I feel like I never know just where to start with that, so I end up doing nothing at all. Like cement boots of love. They are there, on my feet, but they don't move too easy, too often.

I'd like to think that if someone came up to me and asked me to help them buy food, I wouldn't hesitate to give them all that I could. If I knew who it was that was using our card, I would want to ask them if there was anything else I could do to help them out. Jesus said "turn the other cheek", "share your coat", "if someone asks you to walk a mile with them , walk TWO". Isn't that beautiful? I want to be the kind of person who genuinely respects and honors people, no matter who they are or where they've been, because, really, who am I to judge anyone? We're all human beings, and we're all equally loved. Simple as that.

I want to be more compassionate, empathetic, una-frickin-fraid of the human condition.

And if some stolen numbers off of a little piece of plastic can help push the doors of my life open a little more, then I'm grateful for it.

Every person in this world is fiercely loved. I want to see people as God sees them. I'm tired of boxing myself up in my comfy little house and then pretending that that's okay. There are people right here in this community that need HELP, that need a compassionate ear, a soft shoulder, or a nice warm hug. People who need clothing and food and diapers. If the doors to my life were wide open, I would be able to see and hear these requests coming from the streets right outside my door. When they are shut tight, I can't hear or see anything.

I want Ezra to see his mom and dad living these things out daily.

I want him to know that a life with a wide open door is better, simply because it lets in more light.


Anonymous said...

Wow. I love how you can take something that everyone else would see in such a negative light and see some good in it. It is very refreshing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts...


Flo Oakes said...

Wooaaah this is SO weird..because yesterday, OUR bank called us, to tell us that someone had used my husband's card to buy $120 worth of tools and had them shipped to Louisiana.
I know how you feel .. a little, not because of the CC Fraud, but because my wallet was stolen a while was about 10 minutes after I cashed a check to get cash for a trip, and I was at the grocery store buying snacks for that trip. I left my wallet in a cart, and when I came back 20 minutes later, the wallet had already been turned it, but $100 was missing.
There are a lot of...less fortunate people who frequent this particular grocery store.
There is a big sign that says NOT to give them money, food, might as well say don't spread love and cheer as well.
I know that an 18 year old Poly Dolly could have easily stolen the cash to buy a new 5 inch long skirt, but I prefer to think that one of the needy folks that have been brushed aside got to it first, and helped themselves to some lunch.
Who knows.

Anonymous said...

what a fun walk, when i picture it, i picture you, ezra, and mitilda walking to the library to get really smart and move things with your mind

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

i do the same thing when i see firemen. damn they fiiine.

Court said...

First, your little walk sounded like a blast! =)

Second...I love what you wrote about the CC fraud. I'm sad to say that my first reaction would probably be anger. How DARE they try to steal from me! I hope that if something like that ever happens to me I can be as compassionate as you. I would also like to throw open the doors of my life and see what's going on around me!

Tiff said...


Misguided Mommy said...

this reminds me of an episode of friends that is related but not really, where monica's credit card gets stolen and she realizes the girl who stole it is out living this amazing life and taking dance lessons and eating great food and it really made her think that she should be living her own life to the I can actually see how this would inspire you!