What Have You Hoarded Today?
Living in America, a good deal of us (I’d say the vast majority) find that we have more than enough. Even those on food stamps or welfare and living in public housing have it much, much better than those on the street.
Yet finding a soup kitchen or a shelter for the homeless is difficult in most cities I’ve been in (all in Tennessee, the state I live in). I know of one shelter and soup kitchen in Nashville, one in McMinnville that is being renovated from a former animal shelter and that’s it. I’ve lived in Nashville, Cookeville, Knoxville, McMinnville and have been to Murfreesboro, Antioch, Crossville, Chattanooga, and several other smaller cities. I know they all have a homeless population, I hear about it in the news. For those you don’t hear about in the news it’s almost a given for a city of any size (believe it or not, McMinnville, as tiny as it is, has one too).
Yet, at least in McMinnville, our food bank is full to bursting. There is no shelter, except that afforded by abandoned structures and nature, to speak of for the homeless. There is no one going out to the homeless and trying to find out what they can do to help them get into a home. To get a job.
Yet our homes are FULL of stuff. Computers, telephones, furniture, clothing, food, figurines, movies and music and even Bibles.
How many of us can hold a yard sale and make quite a bit of money off of it? How many of us have clothes or blankets or food that we can take to a group of the homeless and provide for some of their needs?
Now how many of us will actually do that?
I will admit that I really hadn’t given it much thought until I read one of my devotionals today. It was simple, yet poignant. Here I am, blessed with all this stuff, much of what I don’t even use anymore and there are people in my own county who, for whatever reason, do not even have a home.
Today I am going to at least see what I can do to change that. Not just for today, either.
Sure I only have a limited amount to give, but I challenge each of you who live in Warren County, TN to do the same. Go through your closets, find what you don’t (or won’t) wear anymore and gather it together. Don’t go to the Good Will truck. Don’t go to the thrift store. Find a group of those who cannot afford Goodwill or the thrift store and give away your items to those who can use it.
Together we can make a difference in Warren County. We can help provide for those who don’t have anything, or anyone. Together we can follow in Jesus’ example and provide not just enough, but more than enough. Make friends with the people you help. Go and see them time and again. Show them how Christ has entered your life. Show them that someone cares. Lift them up, encourage them. Perhaps we can’t help every homeless person, but we can make a difference.
Quit hoarding. Quit keeping to yourself what you don’t want or need or cannot use. Let Christ move in your life and shine through you to those who have given up hope. To those who have been truly marginalized.