Nothing brings people together like a disaster. It’s human nature. Time and again through the historical hurricanes Harvey and Irma these past few weeks, the stories of humanity at its best have illuminated God’s light. I don’t recall a time where I’ve ever seen so many people with such compassion and ingenious fortitude come to the aid of their neighbors. In one of the most divisive times in our country, people stopped, dropped and took action.
When we mobilize, Americans are unstoppable forces of nature themselves. When we extend our hands and hearts to those in need, race, gender, politics and economics matter not.
When we mobilize, spirits lift. When we mobilize, we show others what a helping hand should look like. When we mobilize, we are reminded that there are still good people in this world and that we are all God’s children.
Weeks, months and years lay ahead in recovery efforts. As blue skies return, I urge each and every one of us to keep giving our expertise, time and money to help organizations and efforts in our local communities. Keep…on…mobilizing!
Beyond money and volunteering, there are simple, small steps we can all take that can make a tremendous difference in lives. As communities absorb evacuees:
• Introduce yourself to displaced people, continue the spirit of mobilizing, and help people feel their new and/or temporary community connections so that they know they’re not alone.
• Men, connect with other men whose homes and livelihoods have been upended by the hurricanes. Invite them into your life and circle of friends to help bring a sense of normalcy and connection to their lives.
• Women, reach out to hurricane-displaced women and their children who are now attending your neighborhood schools. Invite them for a meal, engage them, and lend your ears and shoulders as they adjust to this seemingly insurmountable transition.
• Find out who the displaced children are in your school and find ways to create opportunities for your kids to connect with them. Bring them joy!
The return of blue skies doesn’t mean the howling wind and storms of life aren’t still thrashing these people who are faced with decisions that many of us can’t even imagine. No, we must continue to mobilize together and lift them as they rebuild their lives. They must know that society won’t return to “normal” and forget their plight by spewing daily judgments driven by greed, hate, and pride.
It is my prayer that we all take a step back and realize the world is screaming at us to stop the nonsense and love one another. Keep…on…mobilizing!
What are some blue-sky commitments you can make to keep your community mobilizing for the greater good?