Saturday, May 3, 2014
“If you're in trouble, or hurt or need - go to the poor people. They're the only ones that'll help - the only ones.” ― John Steinbeck, “The Grapes of Wrath”
The blog today is dedicated to all those poor people who have helped so many others. I watch “Secret Millionaire” and am so proud of all the poor who work so hard to help each other. Most of the time, they change the way the millionaire thinks about himself/herself. They dedicate their lives and what little money they have to feed the hungry, to help the homeless, to offer sanctuary to troubled youth, to bring groceries to the elderly, to provide coaching for sports to keep the youth off the streets, and to help with the mentally ill. The preceding list is not all inclusive because there are so many people who need help and get it—not from the government or churches or big non-profit agencies—but from the very people who have suffered in the same way. There are couples who have lost children who help other parents through their grief. There are battered women who help other battered women find a way out of the darkness and pain in which they live. There are people who have had loved ones kill themselves who devote their lives to trying to stop others from doing the same. I recommend this show as a way not to watch how millionaires give away their money, but to see the people to whom the millionaires give. Most of the millionaires are deeply changed by their experience and many continue to help long after the cameras have been packed up. The American version (there are Australian, British, Canadian, and Irish versions) requires that the millionaire give away at least $100,000 of their own money. I watched some American versions this week (we get all the versions) where the millionaires went over that amount and gave away up to a quarter of a million dollars. Then, last night, I watched one where a couple gave away $1,325,000 to some of the people in a small town in Oregon, but what was the most moving part were the stories of the people who received these gifts. They work not for the possibility of some financial reward or a plaque or newspaper headlines—they give because they can do no other. They remind me that here, even though we don’t have much to give away, we are the millionaires, but we didn’t just come here for a week and leave. We stay and work side by side to improve the lives of as many as we can and to expand the Kingdom of God. It’s a good thing. It’s a God thing.