Susan McCarson is my friend and traveling buddy. She is a retired teacher who now travels across the US teaching teachers. She also sponsors several of our children in the Philippines. She traveled there with me last year and we are soon to leave for another trip to some of the same places in the Philippines. In the midst of recent storms, she sent this reflection about the preparations people were making so they would not “starve” if they could not get to the store and how it compared with what she had observed in the Philippines.
Bracing for the Storm
By Susan McCarson
The weather forecast predicted freezing rain and snow. According to the reports, the expected accumulation would make driving treacherous for several days. I was in a hotel with a breakfast bar, but decided to purchase some additional food items — just in case.
Apparently, I wasn’t the only one with that idea. The grocery store was full of people preparing for nature’s onslaught. All across the area, people lined up at the cash registers to purchase the necessities to see them through the next few days.
The necessities. What are the necessities? A gallon of milk? A loaf of bread? Fresh fruit? A salad? Fresh vegetables?
The necessities. What are the necessities for families of poverty in the Philippines? The answer is surprisingly simple. Just rice. And thousands of families who live on a dumpsite, under a bridge or in a squatter area cannot even meet this one necessity for their families on a daily basis.
The irony overwhelms me. I was preparing for a few days in a hotel room, while children of poverty are thankful to have one meal of rice per day. How much rice would my “emergency purchases” buy? How many children could be fed?
The one meal that hundreds of children receive often occurs because someone chose to care about starving children. Someone looked in her own pantry or refrigerator and saw an abundance and decided to help someone less fortunate. Are you that person? ……….
We are expecting another round of freezing rain and snow. I will go to the grocery store and stock up on the necessities. It’s human nature. But when I walk down the aisles, I will marvel at the abundance I take for granted. I will thank the Lord for my good fortune to be born in a land of plenty. And I will say a prayer and send help for those who are not.