I volunteered to spend a shift at the Get Up! organised flood relief call centre, trying to match up families needing accommodation with families offering shelter. And it was honestly a relief to spend some time talking to people who had bigger problems than me. Bigger? Well, maybe that is a judgement call, but some of those conversations will stay with me for a long time.
And as well as the woman who wanted to know what religion a single mum with health issues was before she committed to offering to put a roof over her head. Really??? Really? FFS woman, is it Christian to only offer succour to people that agree with you? I think NOT.
And then there was a woman I will call Lovely. She had two bedrooms spare in Ipswich, a place where so many houses were devastated that accommodation offers there are few and far between. She had been in touch with a single mum with three kids, and expected her to spend last night at her house. Only to get a text message at 10:30pm, saying “found a place for tonight, call you tomorrow”. What followed was a number of phone calls where Lovely got progressively more worried about what sort of person she was opening her home to. We assured her that she was under no obligation to offer her home to a stranger that she didn’t trust, and she relied, “there is so much need in the world, how can you close your heart to anyone when you know you could be missing an opportunity to help someone who really needs it”.
Lovely, I hope everything works out, that your guests don’t steal your silverware, and that many, many blessing are heaped upon you and your big heart.