This week I've been reminded about those around me and their sometimes difficult situations. I've got some friends with serious illness in the family and others with significant financial difficulties. In some cases, illness is also causing financial difficulties. In some cases, financial safety nets have been wiped out with the current economic climate. In some cases, illness has struck very suddenly.
I write about community on this blog. We are studying community at church this quarter on Sunday morning. I think the real test of community is how it responds to difficult times. How do we respond when a family is in trouble? How do we know a family is in trouble? Do we support one another when catastrophe strikes? Are we looking around us to see how each other is doing? Are we looking out for the quiet ones who are needing help but can't ask for help?
It is easy to talk and pretend one is part of a family or community, but the test is when trouble strikes and the community responds or not.
I think there is a real burden on all who want to be part of a community to deeply dial into the lives of those around them to see how others are doing. If friends or family are in trouble, you can't sit by and hope they fair well. We've got to step out and do something.
Open your eyes to those around.