Weird Old Man Is Going Door to Door, Everyone Kicks Him Out, but Then Realize the Reason — Story of the Day

Everyone slammed the door in the old man's face except one woman who saw him for who he was and listened.

Jackson Merle was exhausted. He had been knocking on door after door in the neighborhood, looking for work, but no one would even listen to what he had to say. No one wanted to talk to an old man.

He stood in front of the biggest house on the block. This was his last chance for the day. Jackson just hoped the owner was more polite than his or her neighbors.

No one would even listen to what he had to say | Source: Shutterstock.com

No one would even listen to what he had to say | Source: Shutterstock.com

Every homeowner on the street had run Jackson off, without even listening to his proposal, maybe this one would be different? Jackson rang the doorbell. Within minutes a pretty young woman opened the door.

"Goodmorning," she said cheerfully, "What can I do for you?"

Jackson was heartened by her sunny smile and friendly attitude. "Goodmorning, miss," he said, "I'm a handyman, and I'm here to offer you and your family my services."

This was the point when people usually said: "Go away," or "Get lost, old man," or "Go sell snake oil elsewhere." One man had even used foul language on Jackson, but the young woman looked interested.

Jackson had nearly given up hope when he knocked on that door | Source: Unsplash

Jackson had nearly given up hope when he knocked on that door | Source: Unsplash

"What kind of work do you do?" she asked.

"I do anything you might need, miss," Jackson said, "I do some woodwork, painting, cabinet making, I fix small appliances, some gardening, anything you need -- and my rates are very reasonable."

Ruth's neighbors wouldn't even give Jackson a chance to explain what he wanted -- all they saw was a man they considered 'too old' to work.

"Come on in," the woman smiled, "I have a table with a wobbly leg that needs fixing, and maybe you can paint my guest room?" Jackson couldn't believe his ears. He walked into the woman's beautiful house, toolbox in hand.

First, he fixed the table, while the woman -- who introduced herself as Ruth -- sat watching him work and chatting to him. Then he looked at the guest room. Ruth gave him money to buy paint so he could fix it up the next day.

Jackson offered Ruth his services as a handyman | Source: Unsplash

Jackson offered Ruth his services as a handyman | Source: Unsplash

She also paid him twice what he'd asked for the table. "But, miss, Jackson protested, "You've given me too much money!"

"No, I haven't Jackson." Ruth told him firmly, "My daddy always told me to pay a fair price for a job well done, and that's what I'm doing!"

Over the next few weeks, Ruth's neighbors were surprised to see the elderly man coming in and out of her house with his toolbox in hand. Somehow Ruth always found something that had Jackson coming back.

One afternoon, one of her neighbors, Jolene, saw Jackson leave and decided to find out what was going on. She knocked on Ruth's door. "Hey, Jolene!" said Ruth cheerfully, "Come in, have a cup of coffee with me."

Jackson fixed Ruth's table | Source: Unsplash

Jackson fixed Ruth's table | Source: Unsplash

Jolene walked into Ruth's lovely home and looked around. "I don't see why you need a handyman five days a week, Ruth," she said, "Everything looks perfect."

"I don't," Ruth said, pouring out the coffee, "But Jackson needs the work."

"You're giving him work just because he needs it?" asked Jolene, "Just like that? But why?"

"What better reason to give someone work other than that they need it, Jolene?" asked Ruth quietly, "This man is not asking for a handout, he is asking for good honest work."

Ruth explained to Jolene why she gave Jackson work | Source: Unsplash

Ruth explained to Jolene why she gave Jackson work | Source: Unsplash

"He's what -- seventy? Close to eighty, I'd say! He should be retired!" Jolene said.

"Yes, he should be, but unfortunately his wife is very ill, and their insurance won't cover all her hospital costs. Jackson barely has enough to live on after paying the medical bills, which is why he needs to work."

"Well, why don't you just give him the money?" asked Jolene, "If you want to help so much, spare him all that hard work! You can afford it."

Ruth shook her head. "I can't do that, Jolene, that would be giving him a handout. I'd rather give him work so he can earn the money and keep his dignity and his self-respect."

Jackson's wife was ill in hospital | Source: Unsplash

Jackson's wife was ill in hospital | Source: Unsplash

Jolene was moved by Ruth's kindness and thoughtfulness, and the next day she popped in and asked Jackson if he had time to spare to fix up her rickety old gazebo in time for the weekend after he finished his work for Ruth.

Jackson fixed the gazebo and did such a good job that soon the entire neighborhood had him on speed dial. Jackson became the local handyman and earned enough to make ends meet.

Even after his wife recovered from her illness and was released from the hospital, Jackson carried on working for Ruth and his other customers. Thanks to Ruth's kindness, Jackson got the opportunity to earn his money with dignity, and to provide for his family.

Jackson fixed the gazebo and did a great job | Source: Unsplash

Jackson fixed the gazebo and did a great job | Source: Unsplash

What can we learn from this story?

  • Giving a man work allows him his dignity and builds his self-esteem. Ruth could have just given Jackson the money, but she realized that he needed to feel useful and respected too,
  • Everyone deserves an opportunity to prove what they can do. Ruth's neighbors wouldn't even give Jackson a chance to explain what he wanted -- all they saw was a man they considered 'too old' to work. Ruth gave him the opportunity to show what he could do.

Share this story with your friends. It might brighten their day and inspire them.

If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a young boy who wakes up and discovers his beloved mother was gone. 

This account is inspired by our reader's story but written by a professional writer. All names have been changed to protect identities and ensure privacy. Share your story with us, maybe it will change someone's life. If you would like to share your story, please send it to info@amomama.com

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