Every time there is a devastating event in our country, there seems to be two extremes among people. You have those who jump right in and give 110% to help; and then you have those who cannot fathom helping strangers. Thankfully, most of America seems to be somewhere in between these two extremes, which allows us to come together and help people in need nationwide, when they need it the most.
The most recent natural disaster in the United States left thousands homeless in Oklahoma. Normally I would not get involved beyond praying, because we live paycheck to paycheck, and there never seems to be enough money for things around here. Then I realized something: waiting to have enough money/time to help those in need, is just like waiting to have enough money to have children; if you wait until you have enough you will never do it, because there never seems to be enough these days. You do what you can, and you have pride that you did something from the heart, simply to help someone in need.
Mary Carroll, who is an amazing inspiration, just returned from a supply run to Oklahoma where she met and helped many extraordinary people, puts it perfectly:
I’m really touched and thankful for all the messages of encouragement I’ve received the past few days. But truthfully, I am not anything but an AMERICAN that believes that in time of need we have to take care of each other. We have a badass military that will go all over the world to ensure our safety, but when disaster happens here, it’s the responsibility of every one of us to look after our AMERICAN brothers and sisters. Not everyone can get up and go, with no notice, to assist physically, but everybody can do SOMETHING. From donating a couple cases of water or food, throwing in $20 for gas, sending a mom some diapers, and DONATING BLOOD. It may seem like just a small contribution, but if everybody did the smallest thing, collectively we can make something really big happen for some people that lost absolutely everything.
The people affected by the storms and tornadoes in Oklahoma have lost their homes, and many of the day-to-day essentials, which most of us tend to take for granted. They may have lost all their material possessions, but they are survivors and have an abundance of faith. Even as they sit amongst the rubble of their communities, they are filled with an appreciation for the simple things in life and a willingness to help their neighbors; which matches nothing most of us have ever witnessed. Mary reported one day: “The hospitality and graciousness of these OK people is second to none.”
If you think you cannot make a difference, please know that you can, and it does not have to be a grand gesture. You can pray, share resources such as donation sites, donate $1 or $5, collect items needed, etc… It is not about the quantity of help, but the quality of love behind it. In the words of one resident from Oklahoma City: “How much can you thank somebody? The generosity is unbelievable and it just brings you to tears to know so many people care. We are just thankful we are alive.”
This is why we choose to help strangers, because it is simply the right thing to do; and it reminds us that every little bit of positive, loving energy we put out into the world helps perpetuate the change we want to see in the world.
If you would like to help, please visit Oklahoma Relief Run on FaceBook, or you can make monetary donations on their site at GoGetFunding.
Autism Proud – Journey With Us – by Jest Tu Positive by Dorothy Stronglove is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.