It has been said that it takes a village to raise a child. Here is a story of a community coming together to help an elderly man of 75 years. Leonard Bullock, of Pendleton, Oregon, was unable to maintain his house. It badly needed a fresh coat of paint. One day a couple of teenage boys walked by and made a loud, snide remark about the appearance of the house, when the man was sitting on his porch, as he often does. The boys said it looked so bad, “they just need to burn it down.”
The conversation was overheard by another man working across the street. He did not like what he heard. Josh Cyganik decided to do something about it. He went to the local lumber company to see if they would donate paint, which they agreed to do. Then he posted the incident on facebook and made an appeal to anyone who wanted to help paint the house, to show up the coming Saturday at the stated location.
Help poured in. More than 100 people showed up. Donations were made by others who did not come to paint. Food and drinks were delivered by caring businesses and individuals. Starbucks chipped in 6 gallons of water and iced tea. The lumber company went above and beyond providing the paint; they are rebuilding the man’s porch. Other donors gave new furniture. I wonder what the teenage boys are saying now?
While some are just critical with no mindset to help, others see needs and take action. Deuteronomy 15:7-8 says, “If there is a poor man with you…in any of your towns…you shall not harden your heart, nor close your hand…but you shall freely open your hand to him, and shall generously lend him sufficient for his need in whatever he lacks.” This community did more than lend; they gave. They were like a city of shining light set upon a hill(Matthew 5:14). And Pendleton, Oregon, is very hilly; I have been there.
On a personal note, how about you? When you see someone in need, do you close your hand, or open your heart, and what if everyone in your community was like you?