Three brothers and their sons ridicule a homeless man by hurling a loaf of bread at his face. They laugh their heads off when suddenly, the man takes off his fake beard and shows his true face.
Brothers Shaun, Travis, Kevin, and their four kids were returning home from the mall on a Saturday evening when they ran into a dirty old homeless man. The guy in a shabby beard and smelly clothes blocked their way, extending his hand for some change.
“Beggars these days! Back off, no change,” Shaun retorted. But the poor man wouldn’t move and stood still, staring back at them…
The brothers covered their noses and drove past the disappointed poor man. But the guy was not done yet. He knew where they were heading next and followed them.
Moments later, the brothers and their kids, Jacob, Tyler, Adam, and Miley, all in their early 20s, got down at the cafe, only to reencounter the old stranger.
“You? What are you doing here again?” Shaun fumed.
Just as they called him names and approached to beat him up, he tore off his fake beard and stood before them, leaving them shaken.
“I think he is following us. He knows we are rich and has come to make free money. Go away, you old goose! Move away from our car! Don’t dirty it with your stinky coat,” Travis yelled.
The man watched them disappear onto the street and knew exactly where they would go next. It appeared as though he knew their schedule for the day very well.
The family was heading to the church. As it turned out, the brothers had gone there to meet their dad Michael’s best friend, Father Fredrick, to invite him for dinner the following week.
Michael was 78 years old and had been dealing with serious health issues for a long time. He sensed his death was nearing and wanted to organize a small get-together with close family members and his childhood friend.
Again, the brothers and their children noticed the homeless guy standing outside. They were furious, and this time, Shaun’s son Jacob, the eldest of the four cousins, stormed to take some action.
Jacob angrily pushed the man away, calling him nasty names. His brother Tyler and cousin Adam joined him to tell off the poor older man, who started tearing up.
“Please let go of me. I am so hungry! It was just a coincidence I am everywhere wherever you go,” he cried.
“A coincidence? I don’t think so. You have been stalking us for a while now. Go away! I don’t want to see you again,” fumed Jacob.
At this point, Shaun and his brothers chimed in.
“Hey, cool it, son. He is just an ordinary beggar. Why waste time with him? Give him that loaf of bread.”
Jacob grabbed the bread and hurled it at the poor man’s face. “You got what you wanted? Now, back off and don’t see us again!”
Everyone laughed their heads off seeing the man’s reaction, except for Miley, the youngest cousin.
“Jacob, stop…what are you doing?” she jumped to the poor man’s defense. “That’s not how you treat poor people. Grandpa would not like it if he came to know about this.”
“Our grandpa is just a traditional 78-year-old piece of mess. He and his views—He suits himself,” Jacob mocked.
Michael had always fostered kindness in his sons and wanted them to treat everyone without any discrimination. But as they grew up, they forgot about his values and led selfish lives without knowing how to treat and respect people.
Although Michael tried his best to put his grandkids on track, they too went in their dads’ footsteps, all but for Miley. She was kind to everyone and could not endure how cruelly her dad, uncles, and cousins treated the poor man.
“I’m so sorry on their behalf, kind sir. Please forgive them. Here, take this money and buy yourself a warm dinner. Please forget what just happened,” she apologized to the old man.
Then all of a sudden, the stranger started to shed tears, but this time, they were tears of joy. He smiled, patted Miley on her shoulder, and hugged her, shocking everyone.
“Hey, who do you think you are touching? Take your stinky hands off my sister!” Jacob yelled. Just as they called him names and approached to beat him up, the old man tore off his fake beard and stood before them, leaving them shaken.
“GRANDPA?!!” the boys chorused. “DAD??!” Shaun, Travis, and Kevin were startled.
“Why, are you surprised seeing me under this smelly, ragged coat?” grinned Michael. “I thought I taught my sons and their children to respect everyone without discriminating between the rich and the poor.”
“Grandpa, we’re sorry. We didn’t know it was you,” the grandsons apologized, realizing their mistake. But Michael was not convinced. He stormed home, inviting everyone for a little discussion.
Curious, the sons and their children flocked around Michael later that evening. Shockingly enough, a lawyer was also present, holding a file of documents that would turn their lives upside down.
Michael got up from the couch and walked across the living room, first describing how hard he worked to build his empire.
“…And I knew that giving away my hard-earned wealth would not be that easy unless I figured out who among you is the MOST DESERVING. So, I devised a plan and approached you in disguise on the streets.”
Michael had wanted to write a will bequeathing his estate and business. He disguised himself as a homeless man and approached his sons and grandkids to rank them according to who would inherit the most and who would get the least based on their kindness and respect for others. To his surprise, only one made it to the list, and it was Miley.
“It hurts me to announce that I have disinherited my sons and three grandsons from my will. Only one grandchild, my dear Miley, will inherit all my wealth after I’m gone. None of you other than her will be getting a dime.”
Although Michael’s sons and grandsons begged him to change his mind and redraft the will, he refused.
“You cannot rule the world and judge someone by their appearance just because your father is a rich man,” said Michael, as his sons and grandsons hung their heads in shame.
“You’re not going to take money and gold to the grave. You will only take the love and respect you’ve earned in your lifetime. Never forget we’re all humans who need to be kind to others regardless of our wealth. I worked hard to stand where I am today, and I do not wish to blindly give up my wealth to my sons and grandsons who don’t know how to respect others.”
Michael was glad he bequeathed his estate to Miley, who was truly deserving, and he never regretted his decision.
What can we learn from this story?
Money is not everything, so everyone should be as kind and loving as possible. Michael’s sons and grandsons were always proud of their wealth. They judged the homeless man by his appearance and oppressed him by hurling a loaf of bread at him.
Kindness is always rewarding. Miley was the only one who stood in the homeless man’s favor when her dad and cousins ridiculed him. Ultimately, she became the sole inheritor of her grandpa’s estate after the homeless man turned out to be her grandpa in disguise.