I guess I need to begin this post by saying that my husband comes from a HUGE southern, faith-based family. He has sixty first cousins in Florida alone. One pocket ( or branch) lives less than a hour away and are involved with a faith-based ministry there in the Ocala area. While, I personally only know them casually. They are VERY nice people and this post is not about bashing them. But this is a very good example how family members are often clueless to the hardships in their own families. And how they let us down, often without even knowing it.
Yesterday, one cousin, put out an SOS on Facebook asking for volunteers to help her help a disabled vet who was living in deplorable conditions. Her goal was to clean up his house and she needed help . She expressed that she had gloves and masks available to volunteers because of the unhealthy conditions that the volunteers would be facing if they took on the task.
My first thought was of course, ” AWESOME ” What a wonderfully, compassionate thing to do for this poor individual and I commented in that vein.
I even wished that we were in a position to be a part of that rescue. It is something that my husband and myself would gladly do for someone in need and HAVE done many times over.
However, as the day wore on, and I thought about our own situation, I found myself becoming ( for lack of a better word) somewhat BITTER.
As it crossed my mind time and time again. I asked God, to not let this unintentional slight harden me.
Please don’t misunderstand. I don’t begrudge the help that they gave this man. I don’t!
But I felt like this “What are we… rotting chopped liver, or something?”
Which itself is WRONG because, noone truly understands how bad things have gotten for us. I have certainly not volunteered specifics and they are not RIGHT here to see nor would I want them to see … And it’s like the old saying goes… ” Out of sight, out of mind.” I guess. There’s also another saying “The things that are not seen are often the heaviest.” I don’t know who wrote it but I am feeling it these days.
They DO know WE are struggling though. ??? And I struggle and will never understand the thoughtlessness of folks who are supposed to love us.
Later another cousin ( a sibling of the cousin spoke of earlier ) posted an update on FaceBook saying that it took 4-people, 7-1/2 hours to clean, do a dump run and replace old furniture in this man’s home, with previously loved replacement furniture. Said he was blessed to have been able to help this man. He also shared in more detail as to this man’s overall conditions which included, garbage, bug infestation, clogged, plumbing issues. etc.
There was a time, when I would have thought. OH MY GOD, how do people live like this?
I don’t anymore and I will never judge in that vein again BECAUSE I know exactly how life can spiral out-of-control.
My husband responded to this post, not I, but in the same vein as I did.
“I know that you do not seek praise for what you have done this day. I also realize that the praise belongs to God, who has opened your heart to these possibilities. But having said that a hearty WELL DONE to you for listening to God’s voice. What you do for the least of God’s children you do for him.”
When he got done. He told me what he had wanted to say but didn’t. It struck me, because it is the first time I actually heard him express what I have been feeling for months now.
You see, we know about not being able to get garbage hauled off, ( I have at least 20 bags of garbage on porch now) what it is like not to be able to wash clothes, to have septic tank that needs pumped out. Yes, we have plumbing problems too. Sun rotted blinds, that need to be replaced. The blinds were so bad in the front window that I finally tacked up black garbage bags over the window to keep people from seeing in.
What the hopelessness of it all does to ones psyche. It is not pretty.
But it is all relative, and not that hard to fix, if you have the resources which we haven’t had.
But does anyone else see the irony here?
Does anyone else realize what a BLESSING it would be, if someone ( anyone) would step up with a truck and trailer for even one day so we could do a dump run?
Even that would make a HUGE difference for us!
Sorry about this post but I need to get it off my chest. As it has been really bothering me.
Image Credit : http://drdenisburke.com/