Listen to the Lonely

Being a caring person means seeing a need and meeting it. Sometimes it is a simple task. As easy as listening to the lonely.

At a homeless shelter, volunteers showed up to be a part of the Christmas excitement. One of the residents had to explain to her daughters that the presents really were for them. They had never been given Christmas presents before. When those caring volunteers saw the joy on the faces of the children, I think they enjoyed the day almost as much as the little ones. If those people hadn’t heeded the call for volunteers and showed up to help at the shelter, they would’ve missed out on some memorable moments.

We often connect the word lonely with the elderly. Yes, they are the ones whose children have all grown up and don’t come around as much as they used to. They are the ones who still have to perform home maintenance tasks even though they’re not as spry as they use to be. They need people around them for company on quiet days. But they aren’t the only ones who sit at home by themselves.

These days, there are too many families whose adults are working far into the evening or are in traffic so much that their children never eat dinner with them on weekdays. Children sit in front of the TV and eat dinner by themselves in some homes.

Today’s goal is: Take the time to listen.

Many churches offer afterschool programs for these families. The volunteers in these church programs help with homework and provide sports equipment for the kids. But more importantly, they listen to the kids. They provide a place for discussion where the children can voice an opinion and be heard.

Some churches have a ministry to help in nursing homes. A group meets together for prayer and then visits with nursing home residents every week. There are also groups that meets every week to give food to the poor.

Find an organization that needs volunteers and ask about what you can do to help. Or find an elderly neighbor who needs help with a few odd jobs.

Whatever you do to help others, don't forget to stop and listen.

No comments: