Some of the clients we've helped remain in my mind because their stories touch something deep within me.
Many years ago we helped an older woman who lived on a limited income and had endured multiple hardships. As her story unfolded, with loss after loss, I wondered how she had managed to keep from drowning. She shared her story without pity, acknowledging the goodness that had also flowed into her life.
I'm not going to spell out her losses, but they would have broken many of us. So near the end of the interview - when we had taken care of her needs (food, warm clothes, prescription meds) - I leaned over and asked how she had managed to survive all this.
She said each loss whittled her down to understanding that there were just a few things in life she really needed: "her family, her church, and a little bit of food in the house".
Friends, there is a sermon in her response.
In a world that values things over people, we need to pause and think about what really matters in our own lives. And then cultivate those priorities with our time and energy.
Cicero said, "If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need." Do you agree? What is essential to your own life? Name it, and say "thank you" if you have it.