Each year at the Fellowship in which I worship we buy gifts for children of “Shut in Parents”.
This particular social fabric is called Angel Tree.
For Year 2017, we have a lot more Angels requesting gift certificates.
After looking for actual gifts on the tree, many congregants smugly walked away empty handed.
I was able to make facial contact with some of them as they haplessly complained of not having actual gifts to choose from.
I have yet to bring myself to confide to our congregants.
But, yours truly is the source of their consternation.
I was too quick to bail out many grandparents as they were lost as to which gifts their grandchildren will prefer over the other.
I asked one of my fellow co-coordinators, GP, as to how he was able to place so many actual gift requests on the tree.
He said he pushed the guardian to come up with an actual gift and did not allow them the escapism of a gift card.
Why Actual Gifts
The congregants offered resounding reasons for the ire.
As in most faith communities, our congregants are mostly women; and even more so when it comes to actual involvement in outreach programs.
While men are quick to take the easy, straightforward road to satisfaction, women often take the long, winded more intimate scenic back roads.
Women want to know the Children names, their gender, ages, and actual desires.
They match their pick of children to their children’s gender and age.
They involve their children in thinking & choosing the gifts, packaging and delivering it.
Each of these last two Sundays I have weighed my euphoria from quickly jotting down Gift Certificates for the entire family line against the emptiness felt by each congregant as they leafed through each gift request.
I feigned for collaborative thoughts.
Last Sunday, Ms. Ruby, the Church’s founding Pastor’s wife, came up to me and said that she has done this for 20 years and that I am not going to deny her this year.
She said to make sure “to get it right, as it is not the same if she misses out on what she is supposed to participate in“.
Aside from my blunder, all our allotted Angels have been picked.
And, finally this evening I took the time to email Vivian and asked if she has more Angels.
She said Yes.
A batch in our state and a bigger batch the State North of us.
She explained that because of the distance, it will likely have to be Gift Certificates or Amazon Prime.
I asked her to please call me, and she obliged.
She explained to me that these days, gifts cards are OK especially for teenagers.
That is, as long, as some requirements are met.
As she explained everything I knew it was a God Moment.
… having my feet washed out and having twinkles placed in.
Here is a lady I am speaking to for the very first time in my life.
And, she is sharing with me the precaution we should take to measure the veracity of the relationship between the shut in and the ones we are trying to serve in his absenteeism.
Understanding that our Church’s resource is limited and has to be carefully disbursed, we have to be constrained in our financial obligations; yet unrestrained once we establish the actuality of the relationship.
Furthermore, she highlighted the difference between Churches. There are some that just want to get into the homes and are more loose in their qualification process.
It is like him to show up in the little spaces of our lives.
A father and a Husband.
Broad shouldered to carry the fainting and keep those inside in.
Yet secure enough to disappear as the wanderer makes his way in.
- Prayer for the disciples
So that they may be one as We are one.
During my time here, I protected them by the power of the name you gave me.
I guarded them so that not one was lost
( John 17:11-12 )
- Out of my/his hand
No one can snatch them out of My hand.
My Father who has given them to Me is greater than all.
No one can snatch them out of My Father’s hand.…
( John 10:28-29 )
- The Sheep and the Goats
…For I was hungry and you gave Me nothing to eat,
I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink,
I was a stranger and you did not take Me in,
I was naked and you did not clothe Me,
I was sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.
And they too will reply, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?…
( John 25:42-44 )
- Unto Me
Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
( John 25:45 )
Though, I swore to keep my public discord separate from my private affairs.
I have to dedicate this to Sade, my sweetest Taboo.
What a shame that I have to steal from Def; but “Truly, without her, nothing works“.
Each of us has things we want to do, but when our primary responsibility is unprovided for, we are monrose and unhinged.
And, so this is for and to her, and all she does to make sure we are together in Spirit and in Truth.
When things are not right, we quickly come together to structure it before him, he who is able…
Many of the children are been shepherded by their Aging grandmother.
It is embarrassingly agonizing that God continue to have no one else, but grandparents to care for these young ones.
- Angelina Grimké (1805-1879)
- I know you do not make the laws, but I also know that you are the wives and mothers, the sisters and daughters, of those who do
- Mary McLeod Bethune
- For I am my mother’s daughter, and the drums of Africa still beat in my heart. They will not let me rest while there is a single Negro boy or girl without a chance to prove his worth
- Cindy Sheehan
- “I am going to take whatever I have left and go home,” she wrote. “I am going to go home and be a mother to my surviving children and try to regain some of what I have lost.
- Bob Dylan
- My daddy [once said], ‘Son, it is possible to become so defiled in this world that your mother and father will abandon you. And, if that happens, God will always believe in your ability to mend your ways
- Barack Obama
- He was raised literally and metaphorically offshore, in Indonesia by his white mother and in Hawaii by his white grandparents. He is very much an American but tends to view the incongruities of politics with the distancing eye of an outsider
- Danish Proverb
- A rich child often sits in a poor mother’s lap
- Jim McGreevey
- One of the most contentious issues in the divorce is what the child should be exposed to. Her mother made McGreevey and his partner take down a nude photograph in their home, contends that Jacqueline should not be allowed to sleep in her father’s bed, and says that the girl should not be allowed to receive communion in the Episcopal Church because she is being raised a Roman Catholic. At the hearing, the judge said the girl would not be permitted to sleep in the same bed with anyone except her mother or father.
- Denzel Washington
- My mother never gave up on me. I messed up in school so much they were sending me home, but my mother sent me right back
- Hagar & Ishmael
- And God was with the boy, and he grew up. He lived in the wilderness and became an expert with the bow. He lived in the wilderness of Paran, and his mother took a wife for him from the land of Egypt. ( Genesis 21:20-21 )
- Saint Augustine – Ancient Roman Christian Theologian and Bishop of Hippo from 396 to 430)
- He cannot have God for his Father who will not have the Church for his mother.
- George Michael
- I was pretty depressed about my mother’s death. I was as down as I’ve ever been. It was even worse than when my lover died. I found it hard to cope.
- Mother Teresa of Calcutta
- Unless life is lived for others, it is not worthwhile
- Robin Morgan
- We are each precious, unique, necessary. We are strengthened and blessed and relieved at not having to be all the same. We are the daughters of longing. We are the mothers in labor …
- King David
- And David went from there to Mizpeh of Moab. And he said to the king of Moab, “Please let my father and my mother stay with you, till I know what God will do for me.” And he left them with the king of Moab, and they stayed with him all the time that David was in the stronghold. (1st Samuel 22:3-4 )
- Abraham Lincoln
- “And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” I will prepare and someday my chance will come. All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother. Whatever you are, be a good one. I regard no man as poor who has a godly mother. I walk slowly, but I never walk backward
- Haniel Long
- For support, I fall back on my heart. Has a man any fault a woman cannot weave with and try to change into something better, if the god her man prays to is a mother holding a baby?
Listening to the song I first heard today when I went by CVS for snacks ….
Train – Marry Me
Something about …
Forget the world now we won’t let them see
But there’s one thing left to do
If I ever get the nerve to say
Hello in this cafe
You wear white and I’ll wear out the words I love you
Now that the wait is over
And love and has finally shown her my way