"Needy" Families

Back when John was in the Army, we qualified for food stamps. Living on about $1000 a month with a baby, rent and a car payment, there were a lot of things that we now count as necessities that back then were a luxury.

This morning, Crosspointe canceled morning services and is partnering with CCA to take Christmas gifts to "needy" families. I love it that we are canceling "church" to simply be the church today. And as we've planned what we are taking to "our" family, I've done a lot of thinking about the days when we were on the receiving end.

First of all, it is difficult to be the recipient. I remember that when John's company brought us a box with a turkey, a ham, and tons of "fixings" that I sat in the floor and cried after the people left because I was so grateful, but it was awkward making small talk with them when they came to deliver the package. We also made the box that was supposed to be for a single meal last for two weeks, so we could use the grocery money (about $30 a week at that time) to buy gifts for our family for Christmas.

I remember that sometimes Samantha (John's mom) would randomly put $10 or $20 in the mail and we would be so excited because it meant we could order pizza and get ice cream.

I remember that I loved it when John's single Army buddies would come by because they would bring food with them. The stuff we couldn't afford like soda or cookies.

I remember that even in the early years at Caldwell Scott and AD, the best part of getting a bonus from work was that I could go to the grocery store without keeping the tally in my head and I could fill the whole list instead of just part of it.

In all of that time, we never felt "needy." In thinking about the term, it occurs to me that most families don't think of themselves as "needy." After all, there is always someone poorer than you.

It also occurs to me that is what we are supposed to be doing. Always. Sharing our gifts. Not those who 'have' with those who 'have not' but all of us with everything. The artists sharing art with those who are not artistic. Accountants giving financial advice. Musicians playing music for those of us who can't. The organized helping the disorganized...

Generosity is about way more than food banks and money. Generosity is the way things were designed to be. None of us lacking. None of us alone. None of us "needy."

I'm unsure why God entrusted the care of us to each other, but He did. It is almost 9am. We'd better get to it.
© Random Cathy
Maira Gall