Bad things happen all the time
It is easy to say that this year has not been an easy one to deal with. It started out ok but quickly went into what most people are calling the Jumanji game. It is very easy to say no to the alarm clock and just head back to bed, all the while turning off every electronic device that will give you more news about what is going on in the world. Right when we think things are calming down something else happens. At this point I think the world is holding it’s collective breath and biting it’s nails to see what it coming in October. Sadly still we also look at our own lives or the lives of the ones around us and realize that there too circumstances happen that can cause a jolt to our hearts. So how do we, in the mist of chaos and uncertainty get through what has been thrown at us?
As Mr. Rogers would say: “Look for the helpers” As far back as I can remember whenever there was a major catastrophe there were people running away from the danger and there were those running to it. I am not just talking about our wonderful 1st responders. I am talking about the average everyday person who decided in that moment to help.
When I was in high school I went to Emmanuel Reformed Church in Paramount CA. One Sunday the pastor went up to the pulpit to start his sermon. Usually he says a prayer beforehand and that day was no different except for the fact that he was very somber. Earlier in the week one of the families in the church had a terrible thing happen to them, and he was asking for prayers. You see, the parents had gone out for the day and had a babysitter come stay with their young child. While the babysitter was taking the girl out in the stroller they were crossing the street, when a car came too quickly down the road. The babysitter was quick to act and pushed the stroller out of the way of the car and to safety while she took the force of the car hitting her. The babysitter did end up being ok, and what she did for that little girl made it so that she could be cuddled in her parent’s arms that night. The babysitter’s quick thinking saved a life.
Most recently with the fires in our side of the country, the news reports talk about the devastation, and about who was responsible. The news highlight the brave firefighters that have worked hard to battle the blazes and for that I am glad. The pull to be depressed or worried about the outcome of these fires is strong and in these moments it is most important to “look for the helpers”. So many people jumped in and started giving donations to help keep the firefighters fed and taken care of. Local farmers and ranchers came with horse trailers and evacuated as many animals as they could. A local vet in town ended her vacation early to get out to the areas where the was going to hit to help owners get their animals out. She also then gave of her time and services to help animals that were wounded or burned in the fires. Land owners offered up their pastures for the evacuated animals to be brought to. Hotel owners gave rooms to people. The community came together. The current “worldly” problems were put on the back burner so that people could come together.
Helpers were also those people who stayed put. They are the ones that though they were not rushing to help the fire evacuees, they instead showed up to work everyday and made sure store shelves were stocked, hotel rooms were cleaned, medical supplies were available. They made the chaotic world, normal because they did what they did everyday. For that vet who helped on the fire, her staff made sure her everyday patients were taken care of. For the farmers and ranchers, their ranch/farm hands made sure the farms and ranches kept running. Stores had the supplies needed for people to buy so they could donate. The community came together in this way too.
When you “look for the helpers” you will see that there is good in this world. That though there may be disasters happening people are good and want to bring the community together to help and support. Being a “helper” in everyday life is not hard. Be a listening ear to someone. Mow the lawn for an elderly neighbor. Offer to watch a friend’s child for an hour so she can go shopping. Offer a smile to a stranger. Encourage someone. When we are pushed into seeing the bad all the time, it is so important to look for the good instead. I pray after you have read this you will look at yourself in mirror and ask how you can be a “helper”. What if you were to write an actual letter to someone that helped you? What if you received a letter from someone that said thank you to you? Disasters shouldn’t have to happen for us to pull together. The world is already a hard place to live. What is stopping us from pulling together now and helping each other? I would love to hear your thoughts and stories. Until next time:
If you could only sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet; how important you can be to the people you may never even dream of. There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person.Mr. Rogers