After awhile the numbers get to you.
We meet hundreds of poor people trying to make sense out of life and trying to carve out, edge out a bit of a better life every day.
That's correct: every single day.
Today we will visit with something over 200 families in our Haskell Avenue Resource Center alone.
That number doesn't include those who will come to our medical center for care or who will contact our LAW Center for hope and counsel or those young people who have aged out of foster care and who will engage one of our case workers in planning "next steps" for life.
Then, there are the adults who will visit our community technology center searching for work and better skills that might open doors to better jobs and pay checks. There are the children who attend our summer programs in two communities who anticipate another school year. Don't forget the growing number of homeless persons who seek housing or the families who will express their needs to their neighbors who lead the Roseland Homes Community Centers.
The people just keep coming.
The numbers can be overwhelming. The numbers are increasing.
All of this doesn't include other numbers: the number of dollars we have to raise to deliver the services, healing, counsel, training, interventions, relief and education our friends come seeking.
At times we feel as if we are caught between those seeking a better life and those who try to understand, but cannot possibly grasp the depth of the pain nor the challenges facing the poor in a city like Dallas, Texas.
The fact is we shouldn't even have to be here.
In a nation this wealthy, our existence as an organization provides a daily indictment of our community, our state and our nation, not to mention our faith communities.
Things should be different.
Things could certainly be better. But, they are not.
That's why we keep showing up. That's why we keep working in an attempt to respond to the needs defined and presented by our friends and neighbors and left unattended by the inadequate systems in place in our city.
I understand my job.
Still, no matter how long I do this, the numbers get to me.
Good Friday Meditation
5 days ago