Our lives were changed forever
The way we relate to each other, the way we eat, the way we celebrate, how we worship, how we work, what wear, what we buy, where we go, where we live, why we do things in new ways, why CHANGE!!!
The only constant
It’s an old cliche but true! There will be no progress if there’s no change. Life will be boring without change. Everything stays the same and stagnant. With the change, we can save lives, we can innovate, we can move, we can think… we can have fun.
Change transforms our lives, it gives us hope for the future, life grows and creates more changes.
However, where there is happiness, there’s also sadness, where there’s light, there is also darkness, and where there is life, there is also death. We cannot resist change; it is inevitable, inescapable, and is necessary.
The image above shows the way we have adapted in the way we do food pantry. Because of the pandemic, we move the food distribution outside of the buildings to protect everyone and to comply with the regulations. Change is necessary even the way we do food pantries.
Not keeping up
However, the way we help the food insecure population has not kept up with the change. The majority of the food pantries still help others by just handing out bags of food. They are content in just giving away food rather than trying to uncover the deeper needs of people. Because of the effects of the pandemic, people are more hungry for relationships! The isolation and the social distancing have created havoc in our neighborhoods. There are now more people who are experiencing anxiety and depression than in the past 50 years. We, as human beings were not created as transactional beings but as relational creatures. All of us crave social interaction because that’s what we were designed in the beginning.
There is a type of hunger that is not relived by food
The Bible says that loving God and loving others are the 2 greatest commandments. Love is rooted in relationships. As social creatures, each of us needs relationships. Giving bags of food to the hungry is good. Even better is coming alongside them, to earn their trust and by doing so, uncovering their deeper needs so we can help them become more sustainable such as connecting them with other available resources. A way to address hunger is to identify and deal with the causes and not just cure the symptoms.
If we are to help others, we have to look further than giving away bags of food. More changes are needed to alleviate hunger beyond food. Changes start with an awareness that leads to action. An actionable step is to train, coach, and advocate that changes are needed in the way we do food pantries.
Change is inevitable. Change is needed. Change will give us hope for a better future. In the end, change is necessary, change can transform lives. And what better way to reposition the food pantries to be places of change. And so, we need to change the way we do food pantry.