Today is the day labeled Thanksgiving when many spend the day with family cooking, eating, and watching football. It is meant to reflect on what we are thankful for. For some, the tradition of going around the table, reflecting on what they are grateful for still stands. For others, even that has faded through time. We tend to take for granted just what we have in front of us. Sometimes we even sit around complaining and arguing over politics (this year vaccinations) and getting angry at others viewpoints that don’t match ours.
But you are Blessed….
There are many today without food, without heat, of a warm house, and many, in places all around, that live on the streets without food, shelter or the basics. Their bed is made of concrete and their blankets are made of cardboard and plastic. Today is no different than yesterday for them. There is no celebration.
There are government agencies and mayors considering and acting to remove tent cities of the homeless. Some make laws to prevent feeding the homeless in the parks, placing barriers in areas they sleep. They are viewed as an issue, or a problem. What if instead, we could ask on a case by case story of what do you need and how can we help you to help others? Even those still waiting would be given hope to hold on.
They are people with a story. They have endured what most of us have not. They are families. They are Veteran’s, and they are people with a powerful purpose, because they are still here through it all. Being able to say “I have been there” is the beginning of an inspirational story that gives hope to others.
Moving these people so you can’t see them doesn’t mean they don’t exist. They matter too. They are a part of our society, and the answer lies in finding the reason why and addressing it.
Support group administrators are usually those who have been there. Perhaps our public services such as housing and fuel assistance could use their help. It would be a position from the heart, since they know what the journey is like. It’s not just about forms and verifications, it’s about people and families struggling to survive.
Who are they?
They are from every walk of life. They come from backgrounds of bother rich and poor. Family, neighbors, coworkers, and those we have cared about in a season of their lives. They have talents and dreams. They have the strongest example of endurance and many are even Veterans. Don’t we owe it to our Veterans? Don’t we owe it to our society as a whole to help them? Or is our society really an “every man for himself” mindset? Let’s stop demonizing our homeless. Stop trying to move them out of sight or making it a crime to be one. They are fellow human beings. They matter and they are not even living a survival standard of life. Winter is coming and the cold is here. Some will not survive it.
After reading this (thank you), and as you climb into your warm bed tonight, could you consider saying a prayer for those that don’t have a bed or a blanket in the cold? Then tomorrow, before you start your Black Friday shopping, perhaps you could try out a new perspective on those you consider a problem. Do one thing that can help one. There are links below to help one survive. There are also many organizations that need your help. Consider donating to fuel assistance, food share, homeless shelters, or a Veterans organization. Even sending an email to your government officials in support of the homeless. Anything you can think of in, or outside the box of ideas. Perhaps even share this with those you know. You never know who could be impacted from your actions.
So today may be a day of turkey and stuffing and pies, but there are those out there that could use your prayers when you’re giving thanks. They matter too.
Written by Melody Belliveau