Friday, August 5, 2011

Soup for the Soul

Hair refuses to cooperate, kids drank the last of the milk last night (which means no cereal for me), new puppy decided to wake up at the crack of dawn (for no apparent reason), and my husband forgot to put out the trash bin. GOOD MORNING WONDERFUL DAY FROM THE GATES OF HADES!

It’s inevitable that one bad day will catch up with you sooner or later but sometimes it seems to hold out for long periods of time before crashing down on you like a ton of bricks. Today was that day! The victim in us all suddenly cries out in protest ‘why me?’ and a series of unfortunate events continue to rain down on your already pitiful hair making the remainder of the day drag on.

Crazy, ranting, maniacs come out of the woodworks to call you repeatedly throughout the hour and tell you (without empathy) how unhappy they are with you. The ‘to do’ list hit an all-time high comparable to the infamous list of Santa Claus himself. To top it all off, the buckle from your new fabulous platform shoes is digging into the ankle bone relentlessly causing further grief and discomfort. Just when you think it couldn’t get worse, surprise! It does…

Weary and drained your body is internally holding up the white flag of surrender but it is only lunch. ‘Push through, hang on a bit longer!’ you scream to yourself. The continued calls from more ungrateful, angry people flood the phone lines and you’re ready to throw in the towel in defeat.

A hand written envelope catches your attention and you hesitate to pick up the next call. Two notes written on college ruled paper are unfolded and the telltale penmanship of an elementary student emerges. The letters are from recently arrived refugee siblings from the Ivory Coast of Africa. Their family fled to escape impoverished conditions and religious persecution from their native country by arriving here in the United States and becoming citizens. The children, ages nine and eleven, are starting school for the first time in America and could not afford backpacks or supplies. Through generous donations (via the outreach ministry I work for) over 1,000 backpacks were supplied to students in need and the two siblings were recipients of the much needed packs. Their smiling picture receiving the bags and gracious letters were enough to seal the deal and snap me back into reality.

All day long I wallowed in self-pity yet these beautiful children from a life of hate and banishment are elated to receive a small backpack filled with basic essentials. Their sincere appreciation saturated the small notes and I immediately received a refreshed sense of determination to finish the day with genuine thankfulness for the blessings in my life. What a wonderful way to be humbled, by the innocence of two children making an impact in this tough world! Thank you to “A” and “J” for showing me the true meaning of Grace! (I cannot disclose their real names for confidentiality reasons)

If the above story wasn’t enough to pull your heart strings, I was hit yet again with a sensational and inspirational story via twitter regarding a mother’s plight to communicate on behalf of her son and his remarkable journey through life with autism. She resolves to continue her undying support for her child through unconditional love, patience, endurance, and education through life lessons.  To learn more about autism, please visit Jennifer’s blog at and for more on how to volunteer in support of refugees, please visit my links and resources page for the website to World Relief.

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