Every Form of Poverty Has the Same Solution

The blond-haired woman walked into the food pantry. She volunteered there twice a month. That week they had a stock pile of new and used crock pots to hand out along with the food.

“Oh, that will be great!” one of the ladies said. She went there regularly for food. The blond-haired woman handed her the largest crock pot available.

“Will that one work?” she asked.

“It’s perfect! You know, we don’t have a stove in our house. This is so perfect.”

The woman had at least four kids. They made all their meals in a microwave.

* * * * *

Another woman walked into the food pantry. She had thought she wouldn’t need to go there anymore. Then she lost her job, four weeks before Christmas. She tried to keep a brave face, but as soon as she saw the volunteers, those kind people who seemed to really care about her, the tears just started leaking out. Nothing she could do to stop them.

“Oh, no, what’s wrong?” Two of the volunteers came out and embraced her.

“I don’t know what we’re going to do. So close to Christmas.” She couldn’t talk. The blond-haired woman knew she had three kids. What kind of Christmas would this be for them?

“It will be fine. You know? Everything will be fine,” one of the other volunteers said, putting her arm around the lady’s shoulders.

“The kids couldn’t wait for us to get a tree. Now,” she tried to stop crying but she couldn’t. “We don’t have any money.”

“Hey, you know what?” the volunteer asked. “We have a tree! We do! Someone just dropped one off today. You can have it!”

You know the difference between crying and sobbing for joy? Yeah. That.

* * * * *

A man I greatly respect, Michael Slaughter, has this saying: “Christmas isn’t YOUR birthday.”

My good friend Chuck Holt says that every form of poverty has a solution: one person that cares.

Will you be that person this Christmas? Will you be the solution to someone’s poverty?

6 Replies to “Every Form of Poverty Has the Same Solution”

  1. I’m not afraid to say it: my eyes welled up (slightly).

    I remember once after I just got home from spending 3 months in a 3rd world country, I started to lose it in a restaurant when all our food was delivered.

    Lord, help us never need to remember to not forget. (That’s an odd sentence, but I think the heart is in it.)

  2. I work in a homeless shelter — and what you’ve written… awesome.

    It is what it takes — one person who cares and that one person cares about another and that one about another and eventually, we all care enough to make a difference together.

    Thanks for this!

    PS — I travelled here through Glynn’s review of your new book, My Amish Roots. Sounds delightful!

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