I was reading the news and Facebook this morning, across my Facebook thread many posts scrolled past about how we should be helping our own veterans – homeless children – people in need before letting any refugees into our country and helping them. Will I had a good friend put the answer to this question into perfectly wonderful set of words.
<<“shouldn’t we be helping our own first?!”>>
“Here’s a thought… if you want to help our own before helping refugees, get off your ass and help. don’t walk by the homeless, stop to give them money or offer them clothing… or really put your concern to work and offer them a place in your home to crash. the same logic goes for the elderly, the disabled, every other group i hear people saying we need to help first. YOU can help them by doing something right now. today. helping our own is entirely within the reach of each person, personally. get up and do something if you’re so concerned. stop saying we need to help our own first when you aren’t doing a damn thing to do so. we need to help both our own and the refugees, and that is entirely possible and entirely doable… if people would stop talking and start acting.”
I couldn’t agree with these words any more then if I said them myself!
I was taught seven basic principles to guide how to live life from my family, and these are Cherokee principles:
Wisdom: To cherish knowledge is to know wisdom. Wisdom is given by the Creator to be used for the good of the people.
Love: Love must be unconditional. When people are weak they need love the most.
Respect: Have respect for all that is. All of creation should be treated with respect. You must give respect if you wish to be respected.
Bravery: To face a foe with integrity. To do what’s right even when the consequences are unpleasant.
Honesty: Always be honest in word and action. Be honest first with yourself, and you will more easily be able to be honest with others.
Humility: You are equal to others, but you are not better.
Truth: Speak the truth. Do not deceive yourself or others.
My wife and I try hard to live our lives by these words and values. We may be considered poor ourselves, but we try and help others who are struggling too. Even when we were at our darkest hour and thought we were going to be homeless and depended on food pantries to eat we did what we could to give. We donated clothing – winter coats/gloves/scarves – books etc to the “Friends of Night People” a non-profit organization that helps homeless and low income people/families here in Buffalo, NY.
During the dark days of our struggling, we would depend on food pantries, such as the one that “Friends of Night People” and “Food Bank of WNY” provided. While visiting the pantries we would take only what we needed and would graciously say no thanks to those things we couldn’t eat due to health issues, allergies, etc in order to make sure it was left for those who could use it or needed it more.
Then their were times we managed to have cabinet full in the kitchen for the week or month. We would surpass that visit because we knew that food pantries did not get unlimited food and their was someone else out their in need. If we went to get food when we really didn’t need it then someone else who did would be left out.
We have open our doors so many times to people who needed a place to crash for a night – for a few nights – for a week even. I admit we have never open our doors and said “please move in and stay” because 1. we ourselves could be evicted 2. It wouldn’t be helpful, to help them find a place to crash and get on their feet yes, to help them find a place to crash and drag their feet until we put ourselves into danger of being evicted no.
So, if you are SO worried about OUR homeless – OUR Veterans – OUR Children do something about it NOW. Stop complaining about the people who drain our system and those who pay taxes. I am not so gullible to say don’t worry about your own welfare or your families, no matter what! But, their is something everyone can do starting today for that homeless person, that veteran, that elderly person, etc that “we” are so worried about yet still is suffering and being used as an excuse to not help yet another person who has been put out of their home.
At this point I wish to quote our most beloved Lakshman Kadirgamer who said “the battle for peace, (has to be ) fought in the hearts and minds of people. It is won or lost there. One can win wars but lose peace.”
May you have peace in your heart and much blessings