I think we all have a fear, and its understandable, a fear that if we share then we won’t have enough, or we’ll have to go without. But, really the opposite is true. Something amazing happens when as humans we share what we have – somehow what we have together multiplies.
After Hurricane Katrina we had lots of people come live in our home in New Orleans. I remember one night realizing there were 12 extra people sleeping in our home. That included the FEMA trailer parked out back. That year after Katrina was difficult of course. My kids gave up their bedrooms and slept in the den for a year, sometimes people didn’t wash up after themselves, or put things back where I wanted them in the kitchen, but it was one of the best years of my life and I made friendships in that full house, jam packed with people, that were incredible and life giving.
When I see people on social media saying, “We’d love to help the refugees fleeing into Europe, but we just don’t have the room! The houses, the jobs!” I fully understand their fear. I don’t think they’re bad people, I think they’re just afraid. Afraid of the unknown. Of lack. But somehow, in some cellular, metaphysical way, to give really IS better than to receive. We don’t have to be afraid of lack. We don’t have to be afraid of sharing the happy, lucky place we get to call home. If we overcome our fear and invite these people – fleeing from terror and unimaginable pain – into our communities. If we treat them as valuable human beings then we reverse the flow of violence.
Even scientifically it makes sense; the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Somehow together we have more.
People say there is not enough room. But if each gave a little room, then it would be enough. This is a vital time in our history as humans. Will we evolve and become the peaceful, compassionate, kind world we long to see? Our actions in this crisis are decisive! They will shape what we will become as a planet of people.
I really hope that when crisis comes to my door again, like it did 10 years ago in the shape of a hurricane, that I won’t be afraid of lack. That I’ll overcome my fears and say, “Come in. You’re welcome. Find rest here.”