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The numbers we need to feel good about.

April 3, 2020
If anyone has watched even 5 minutes of news over the past few weeks you understand the importance of numbers.
The number of diagnosed.
The number of states affected.
The number of deaths.
 
Numbers have been blasted at us and I do believe we are getting numb to them. Who wouldn’t?
 
I have been blessed and broken to respond to multiple weather catastrophes. At the onset of each of those catastrophes I had heard the numbers of deceased, the numbers of those injured, the numbers who lost their homes. It appeared that a tornado or flood only gained news worthy space if the numbers were great enough to attract attention of the viewers, as if one death or one family homeless was not tragic, but 20 dead and 100 homeless deemed worthy of the first 10 minutes of the newscast. In each situation I arrived, I found myself moving through homes where “one” who was in need of hands and feet and at those times I found myself focused on not all in need but that “one”.
 
Now there is a ticker of numbers on the screen and we have become numb to those waching the numbers of those diagnosed, and even worse numb to the number who have become victim to COVID 19.
One to suffer was one too many.
One life lost has impacted countless others.
One unsuspecting victim who was thrust into a suffocating and isolated death should be enough to stop us in our track and take a knee.
What can you do to stop it from affecting one more?
Yes, stay home.
When you are out be safe, take precaution, be aware of the risks you present to others and that they present to you, and remember we are NOT avoiding the person near us not accepting of who they are, we are avoiding the virus that is invisibly attacking the innocent potentially through each and every one who we are.
Yes, reduce your physical one to one connection with people not in your immediate household. This is truly hard because people thrive on relationships. People need people, and that is beautiful. But for now we need to love them from a “safe distance”.
Safe for them, safe for your loved ones, and safe for you.
Offer what you can, as you are able.
If you are not one of the over 10 million people who have applied for unemployment, you are truly blessed. Your number hasn’t been promoted because it doesn’t draw the rubberneckers. I am thankful for you to still be employed!
If you are able to offer #plusone your offering would benefit one who has been sent home; one that has been deemed “non-essential”.
I envision this separation between those that have work and those that do not to be like the high school gym class where two are chosen to pick teams and they go through the peers in front of them picking whom they would like to be on their team to assure them the best chance for winning. Were any of you one of the last ones picked? Were you made to feel “non-essential” in that experience as a young person? Now we have college graduates, adults, parents, “bread winners” for the household who have experienced a similar feeling of rejection being told to “stay home” with no pay until this passes, only to hold onto hope that their employer will be one of the fortunate ones to reopen their doors once this darkness passes.
I am asking that we concentrate on those numbers in a positive way, bringing what we can into this most difficult chapter.
How can we meet the needs of the “non-essential”, the unemployed, the households that have fallen in the cracks- not diagnosed, not dead but suffering through this crisis?
 
Well my friend, you have done an amazing job for the past few weeks and I want to commend that effort and recognize the following numbers!
More than 130 fresh cooked meals have been delivered to a home that is struggling through this as a gift from a business owner, or a “friend” who sponsored that meal.
More than 115 relief deliveries have been gathered and delivered; offering paper products, cleaning products, personal care items, fresh food and non-perishable foods. We have families with 1-5 kids struggling to keep basic needs in their homes; we have families that were 2 income households, and now are none. We have families that are huddled up trying to keep a positive face in front of their children but behind that mask is worry of how to meet needs now, wondering how long the lack of income will last, and IF there will be a return to “normal” life that was the norm before March 13th.
5 seniors who didn’t know who to call for help have called to ask for help in getting needed food, prescriptions and needs. Volunteers have stepped forward to meet that need.
More than 120 calls were made to check in, ask what we can do to help, and offer a compassionate voice at the other end of the phone. All of those called said they would love to have follow up “check in” calls.
A plethora of Amazon shoppers have made two a day Amazon drops a regular happening at my home because you have frequented the link set up by Lemont Calvary Church.
Multiple Amazon drivers most likely hate seeing my address on their delivery route
Shop from home for “gold Items” via our Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/285TQBER3MHMQ/ref=cm_go_nav_hz
 
Countless walking angels have stepped forward to offer what they can as they are able.
More than 7 local business owners have stepped forward to lock arms with us to create a life preserver for those who are drowning in this shut down, while also trying to save themselves, offering their business location for our donations, setting up as a drop location, food donations, meals cooked. The awe inspiring selfless beauty of this is that they have not sought public attention or appreciation for themselves or for their business, they have reached out to me to do what they can as they are able and never asked me to promote their generosity in any way or form. I am so very blessed to see God work through those who allow the strength of unconditional love to flow through them to those who have been knocked to the mat by this gut wrenching, breath taking “life blow” while trying to stand up through the storm themselves.
 
I ask you to focus on one number.
One.
You are one who can make a difference.
You offering what you can as you are able makes a difference and already has.
Your donation, offering of help, prayers and support matters.
No one needs to offer more than they are able, if possible we are simply asking you to offer #plusone
 
Hope and Friendship Foundation began the “relief delivery” collection drive on Friday March 13th – 21 days ago- when the doors to our schools had to be closed. This “relief” was engaged immediately knowing that our families in need needed more help than ever before, and knowing that the number of our families “in need” would immediately grow; this has been a reality and the numbers will keep growing. School District 113A has offered lunches to anyone who needs them since the onset of the school doors having to close.
More than 200 have recently accepted that help and received lunches every day from a smiling staff who is working to provide a safe and loving place to arrive for much needed food.
Hope and Friendship has received 110 of those lunches and put them in homes that were not previously receiving them.
 
I could go on with the number of thank you’s, the number of calls for help, the numbers of texts/calls/messages of stress and worry, the numbers of those reaching out on the first of the month worried about rent and mortgage, and the numbers of households that were already entered into a war to survive and now have this added to the battle. They are tired. They are bruised and battered. They are within our arm’s reach and simply need hope, love and light to see that there will be an end to this crisis, and that this is NOT their end.
 
The numbers you see on the news will increase; I hope to offset that with the numbers that you are reaching here in our corner of the world. I hope you will know that your #plusone makes a difference to one. It truly matters.
 
What we are experiencing is overwhelming. It may seem like what we can offer, our #plusone, cannot possibly matter, I understand we cannot save them all, however what we are doing matters. One by one we are touching lives, lifting spirits and putting hope in what seems like a hopeless situation. It matters to that one.
 
The Starfish Story- One night, on a sandy beach, a terrible storm started. It rained. The wind blew so hard that it shook the houses along the beach. The next morning was foggy and gloomy. Many starfish had washed up on the beach. A man walked out on the beach to look around. Peering into the mist he saw a young man walking along the beach. He saw him throwing starfish back into the ocean. He walked up to him and said, “Why are you throwing those starfish back into the ocean? They’ll just wash back up on the beach again. It doesn’t matter.” Without a word the young man bent over, picked up a starfish, and threw it with all his might. It went way out in the ocean. The young man turned to the man that questioned his efforts and said, “It mattered to that one.”
#youmatter #theymatter #allareessential #loveall #wewillallgetthroughthistogether #conqueringCOVID19 #hopeandfriendshipfoundation #reliefbags #beautifulcorneroftheworld #VillageofLemont #ilovethiscorneroftheworld
Wishing you peace, love and healthy days,
Terri
 
When you are out be safe, be precaution, be aware of the risks you present to others and that they present to you.
 
Hope and Friendship Foundation
721 Hickory St, Lemont, IL 60439
630-816-4972
 
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”
Proverbs 31: 8-9

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