There are some more bitter bitter sweet sweet things tumbling around my brain these days.
For example, and don’t get me wrong, it makes sense that gazillions of dollars are being infused into the economy from governments. People need to maintain their jobs, businesses and housing in order to put food on the table and provide for their families. However, this is considered emergency money for a rainy day like this. But thousands of people being homeless is somehow not considered an emergency and therefore governments can claim they can’t ‘afford’ to help.
That’s bitter bitter.
The sweet sweet side of this is watching people like Erinn and her staff making sure that everyone in her community has the things they need. They are doing some very cool and courageous things.
I am also staying in touch with the folks at Gateway and the Salvation Army shelters (I think about the place every day as I have this painting of Gateway, that was commissioned as a farewell gift for me, on my wall near my bed)
I’m hearing about the heroics of the staff going in every day to make sure that people are safe. A bitter bitter part of this is hearing the anti-poverty folks talk about how awful all shelters are when I know full well that, even though it’s obvious that some places are extremely poorly run, this is not true all around. Shelter staff are literally putting their lives on the line every day so that people can have a place to stay.
That’s sweet sweet.
Even though the church has often been on the wrong side of justice issues throughout its history, that’s not the case here. Historically Christians, among others of course, have always stayed on the front lines when the going gets rough. That’s a sweet sweet thing to watch and be a small part of.
Another bitter bitter part of this is hearing stories from folks who are homeless themselves. They literally have no place to self isolate. There is no place to go to warm up. Libraries and Coffee shops are all closed which is where people would often go to grab a coffee or sit on a computer for a while. I sure hope this ends soon. At least today I’ve heard about hotel rooms and apartments opening up for folks that need a place.
On the health front, a sweet sweet part of this is that almost every morning and night a PSW comes in to help me get up and go to bed. There are occasions these days when they call in sick and there’s no one else available to come in. So another sweet sweet part of this is that I have a family that can help me during those times. A bitter bitter part of this is remembering those who do not have family that can help and so therefore are stranded when no PSW can come. I can only imagine how lonely and at risk some people are at times like this. So sad.
Another sweet sweet thing in this is that the earth gets a chance to take a breath from all the planes and vehicles. Maybe it’s just me (and Erinn), but it feels as though the air is already cleaner and the sky is bluer.
It’s kind of an earth Sabbath I guess.
That’s a sweet sweet thing.