When I find myself in times of trouble
We are definitely in times of trouble. Not many of us have experienced anything like the current corona virus pandemic. If you are feeling anything like me you’re vacillating between moments of sheer panic and blatant uncertainty. It’s impossible to plan our lives right now when each day the rules change and we are met with a new reality. We’ve all seen the pictures, or witnessed first-hand, the empty shelves at the grocery stores. We’ve all had to debunk false information spreading about the virus. And many of us have had to beg our elderly parents and grandparents to just stay home. Many of us are relying on our faith, family, and friends to get us through.
The patron saint of kindness, Mr. Fred Rogers, once said to the children he ministered to and educated for four decades,
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’”
Many times I have heard other adults telling each other that they must look for the helpers like Mr. Rogers’ mother told him to do. But I have a different admonishment — it is absolutely imperative that we must BE the helpers. We must be the caring people in this world helping each other out when times are as uncertain and scary as these. We must model this for our children so that they will also grow up to be helpers. We must model for our children what it looks like to be helpful, kind, compassionate, empathetic, and brave.
I know I can think of many times in my life when I was in moment of crisis, someone extended a caring hand. I know that we all can. And hopefully we all exist in someone else’s memory of a time we were a helper to them during a trial in their lives.
During this time of crisis we’re going to need big-time helpers and small-time helpers, and sometimes the small-time helpers keep our spirits going just so that we can get through another day. We need big-time helpers like healthcare workers and grocery store workers. And we need small-time helpers like those of us willing to smile at a stranger, check in our friends and family, and hunker down together until our new normal becomes an even newer normal. Being a helper is the embodiment of the commandment to “love thy neighbor.”
What are some of the ways you are being a helper right now?
How has someone helped you this week?