In case I've never told you in my nearly-two years of blogging, I am a COUPON QUEEN! I'm a notorious collector of cents-off coupons or two-for-one, or whatever else I get.
Does that make me cheap? Not at all.
It makes me practical...to the point that I sometimes say to my husband who goes shopping and ends up buying something that he shouldn't have -- "Thanks for buying that. But YOU SHOULDN'T HAVE! I have a COUPON for it!"
People are amazed at what I save on, how much I save, and sometimes my husband tells people in this way: "This grocery was on at such-and-such a sale price. Pearl had a coupon for such-and-such an amount. At the end, the store had to pay Pearl!"
In any case, I cut all kinds of coupons that I think I might eventually use, and I trek them around either in my purse, or in a shopping bag. But I don't always stand there in the supermarket and look through them. And yes, sometimes the dates expire on them and I haven't made use of the coupons. Oh, well, the intention was there.
Which brings me to good intentions and the subject of this post: an easy mitzvah.
Knowing that I won't always use a particular coupon, but I cut them out all the same, I realize I can share them. Yesterday, I was in the supermarket and there was a frum man in the checkout ahead of me; I saw he had a particular item in his cart, and I knew I had a dollar-off coupon for that item but would probably not use it. So what did I do? I offered and gave it to the man! And he was most appreciative.
Not too long ago, I did the same with several diaper coupons I had in "my collection." Now my children haven't been in diapers for several years, so why did I even cut out those coupons? I don't know really, but maybe it was just G-d prodding me in the right direction to do a mitzvah -- I gave those coupons to a frum woman pushing a buggy in the supermarket, in which there sat a baby and toddler. I figured she could use them. And she was most appreciative.
So in essence, I am able to do a simple good deed by cutting out coupons. It never occurred to me when I pass these coupons along that I am doing it in order to perform a mitzvah; it is just my (thankfully) G-d-given nature to share, be friendly, and do nice things. Certainly not to earn brownie points. But yesterday, in particular, after I gave the man the coupon for Kleenex (tm), I realized I'd made him happy, I'm made myself happy, and in the long run made G-d happy.
So, people, get out there and start collecting coupons. You never know who you might just end up helping with a $1.00 off coupon for I Can't Believe It's Not Butter! (tm) or a 75 cent coupon for Pampers (tm) Wet Wipes or a $2.00 off coupon for Oil of Olay(tm) skincare products!