In the news there have been too many tragic stories to count. As they have happened, I've found myself at a loss for words. Trapped in disbelief and grief, and wondering what on earth can be done.
In the shower today, where many good ideas are born, I thought of my answer.
We need miracles, more than we can count. If you haven't seen any yet, make one happen.
I realize the word I'm using is a bit...audacious. I'm not suggesting that you turn water into wine [though if you can, that would be welcome too]. This is about giving what you can in your own way. Not holding back, because you're not sure if what you have to give is "enough."
A loved one. People in your building. Strangers you pass on your commute every day. Your mom's cousin's best friend. They need you. We need you.
What can one person do?
I'm glad you asked. Amidst recent events I still don't have words for, I witnessed several wondrous acts of kindness and charity.
"Happiness is finding a pile of feminine products in my office."
He meant it.
He is my friend Jan-Michael Sacharko. His office is at New Hope Housing in Northern Virginia. He gets requests all the time from the homeless populations he serves, and from organizations who are looking for ways to help.
Last week a local shelter requested feminine hygiene products, and the next day when a woman walked into his office asking what her organization could do, he had the answer. The day after that the group started a drive. The day after that, items had already found their way back to him with more to come.
"It's a miraculous sign!"
Along those same lines, last Tuesday I woke up to two emails in my inbox. The first was from a long-time client and friend who has received so much from coaching, she wanted to give that opportunity to someone else. Her email asked if she could sponsor a client.
The second was from another friend who is struggling. She needed help sorting out a few things in her life, money among them, and asked if I ever offered scholarships.
Though I never have before, this was too much of a coincidence not to jump at the chance. I emailed them both back with an enthusiastic YES!
These were their responses, again coming through within minutes of each other.
"Holy cow, are you serious?"
"It's a miraculous sign!"
"I would want someone to do the same for me."
A tragedy so monumental I can't speak about it without choking up.
Last Monday, Ken Gemmell had the unbelievable happen. A small plane crashed into his home in the Maryland suburbs of Washington, DC. In it were his wife Marie and their two young sons. All three died in addition to the three on board the plane. He and his daughter Arabelle are left without a home and the people they love the most.
Then someone stepped in.
Jenifer Miller created a Fund for the Gemmell family, and a nationwide community stepped up to do what they could. Get them back on their feet, and give them a place where in time hopefully they can heal.
Why did she do it?
"[This] is about helping people who are in need because I would want someone to do the same for me whether they knew me directly or not."
Only days later the fund reached $400.000, and continues to grow.
Kindness and generosity happen all the time. Make sure you're part of them.
Wishing all of us more miracles than we can count.
Now get going!