“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2 RSV
As I write this COVID-19 is changing everything about life as we know it. We’re asking ourselves how we can be helpful to others when sheltering-in-place and social distancing are our best protections against infection. For each of us those answers will be different depending on our age, our health status, where we live, our access to the internet, and what we are comfortable doing.
Neighbors helping neighbors websites
The First Presbyterian Church of Bend, Oregon opted to serve their community by establishing a website where individuals needing assistance could post their requests and those offering help could respond, or list their availability for other tasks. Pandemic Partners was launched and within days, 10,000+ neighbors were involved. NPR picked up the story and with instructions provided by the church, 30 more websites quickly went online across the country as have similar neighbors helping neighbor’s websites.
Meanwhile, countless individuals are checking up on family, friends and neighbors, as well as doing innovative things to bring us together emotionally while keeping our physical distance.
For many of us the larger question is how can we be generous with our dollars when we don’t know what is going to happen to us financially in the months that lie ahead. If you get a regular paycheck or have money in the bank to live on, consider living below or maybe even way below your means so you can help others who no longer have an income. Food banks and homeless shelters would welcome your donations.
If there is someone you normally do business with who cannot cut your hair, clean your house trim your hedges or provide child care because of virus restrictions, help bear their burdens if you can and pay them anyway.
We’re all in this together
Make no mistake about it. We will get through this and we will be stronger because of our response to the virus, but it isn’t going to happen overnight and everyone’s help is needed.
What are you going to do to help others survive?
Blessings on your efforts to be generous during this pandemic,
Judy Osgood | April 13, 2020