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Many times, Heather and I hear from people facing circumstances that are heart-breaking. Struggles that seem insurmountable, situations that seem hopeless. At those moments, words fail me. It doesn't seem like enough to offer kind thoughts, prayers or words to people facing some of the hardest challenges...especially ones that I haven't myself experienced...but sometimes words, thoughts and prayers are all we have to give.
There are a lot of people tonight out there hurting. Some are dealing with sicknesses - whether their own or their families. Some are dealing with financial misfortunes...wondering where the money is going to come for the next meal, the next house payment, the children's needs. Some are dealing with heartbreak....doubting themselves and wondering if they will ever find someone again. When you meet someone like this, what can you say? How can you ease their burden? The truth is, you probably can't....but it is better to try something, than to say nothing.
When someone is sick and dying, we don't know what to say. I recently went through this with my Aunt. She had emphysema and things were quickly taking some pretty major turns for the worse. I tend to be the eternal optimist when it comes to someone being sick, and always act like we are a prayer away from a complete recovery. As things started to become painfully obvious that there was to be no recovery, I found myself without any words and not sure how to reach out. What do you say to someone who is dying? I had no idea and wasn't sure what to say because I wanted to make sure that it wasn't a goodbye. I felt as if I said any type of goodbye, it would be like giving up on her or being disloyal -- not rooting for her until the bitter end. On the other hand, though, saying nothing meant her possibly leaving without hearing everything that she meant to me. So I wrote one of the hardest letters of my life. I told her every memory that I had of her and how I'd take it with me in the future. I bawled the day away writing and thanking her for showing me so much love. For never judging, for always accepting. For sending me flowers to celebrate my first prom, to sending my new husband and I to a dinner we'd never have been able to afford, to celebrating each of our children's births, for teaching me how to cook, for all the laughs, the memories, the fun and the lessons. It didn't hurt any less when she was gone, but I knew that she knew how much she was loved until the very end.
Sometimes it's uncomfortable to reach out to other people in their time of need because you are afraid you may embarrass them. If you know that they are going through a tough spot financially, you walk this fine line between trying to help and meddling. Between being a loving person and invoking their pride. But, if your heart is in the right place I believe that it is better to ask how you can help than to say nothing at all. They may not accept, but at least they know that you care.
Sometimes it seems like all is hopeless. There are so many people struggling with depression and feelings of hopelessness. Some of the help needed goes well beyond what we can provide...but when you can reach out, do. You may be someone's lifeline. Someone's hope...their light.
One of my favorite philosophers, St. Francis of Assisi once said, "All the darkness in the world can't extinguish the light from a single candle." As long as you act in truth and in beauty, you will be that light for another. And I hope you know the exact person I am talking about....
It's the person whose actions result from love. Who listens to what you have to say and never judges. Who guides, but never steers. Quick to lend a hand, even when they probably don't feel like it. Willing to help you through anything, even if you say you don't need them. True lights of the world....I've been lucky to know a few. (And someday aspire to be one for others!! I'm working on it....just like the rest of us! =)
St Francis of Assisi said it like this, "Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words." Mahatma Ghandi like this, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." Regardless your religion, your spirituality, your belief system -- being kind and full of love transcends it all. It is what we are called to be. That is regardless of your financial situations, your struggles, your strifes, your past.....
"This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever; in its place is something that you have left behind...let it be something good."
In love and kindness,
How we work
We are an online community of kind-hearted individuals who directly donate gently loved children's clothes to mothers who could use a little kindness. The wonderful donating mothers lovingly box up the clothes that they once loved their own kiddos in and send them for another mother to love on her children via the US Mail - Parcel Post. If you are in need, know someone in need or want to help by donating, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you can't do any of these but would like to spread our message - thank you kindly! ~ Elizabeth & Heather