I committed to Blogging today about poverty...and then I realized I don't know much about poverty firsthand! I have never went to bed hungry except by choice and then I am sure I got up in the middle of the night and made myself a sandwich! I have never listened to my children cry from hunger...they may have cried because they did not like what I made them for dinner but never from hunger! I have never slept outside in the elements because I have always had the means to provide a roof over my head or parents that did that for me! I don't even camp because I don't enjoy it! I have a nice hot shower every morning and fresh clean clothes to wear! These are my blessings that I take for granted...
I wanted to look up statistics to show you how many homeless there are in Florida but do we really understand numbers? I don't think so...What I do know... I can't not look at the homeless in Florida anymore. They are everywhere. I guess some came because of the promise or hope of work that never materialized! We see them whether we want to or not . You know that moment... we all have that moment... when we either look away or make eye contact. If we look away...we don't have to feel anything...whether it be judgment, pity or apathy.
I see them now in huge numbers of people in groups on street corners...regulars, who have formed families or who are families! These are people who are mentally ill, alcoholics or drug addicts or people who are "down on their luck!" What a nice phrase for something so dreadful! I can't look away anymore!
They are almost always dirty as it is difficult for them to find a place that will let them shower.
Our community chamber and a group of churches have done something about this need...they formed I am Hope Cafe and there we serve a daily meal at no charge and we are hoping to arrange for showers. Hubby and I have the privilege of serving meals to these people. Some are ill, or have taken drugs, or have been drinking or they are people who have lost everything! Some want to be right where they are, some who hate where they are or others who don't know how they got where they are! Children are fed. Babies are fed. All are fed.
I don't pretend that we will fix this problem...just that I won't look away and they will be fed.
The King will reply, "I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me."
Has your community been affected by poverty? How have they addressed it?
Visit Blog Action Day Poverty and join the conversation.