You never know when the help you give comes back to you many-fold.
Two years ago a Fairview couple with three children had come to the point of desperation.
The father was disabled and the mother had to leave her job to take care of him. They applied for disability financial support, but the usual wait for approval had drained their savings.
“The family spent two years just hanging in there, waiting on lawyers and the court system to approve disability,” said Kristin Ertel, GraceWorks West senior manager.
“They were struggling to make ends meet. Nothing seemed to be going right. They were facing eviction, utilities were being disconnected. They had very little food to eat — and GraceWorks was able to bridge the gap.”
The family was eventually approved for disability payments, and they began to get back on their feet.
Last month, they showed their gratitude in the most tangible way.
They showed up at GraceWorks West door with 600 pounds of food — pasta mixes, juices, canned meats, Ramen noodles, crackers, toaster pastries — and personal hygiene items not available with food stamps, such as toothpaste and deodorant.
“They got all caught up on their bills and came straight to me and asked what we needed for the food pantry,” Ertel said. “She kept saying ‘We would not be here today without GraceWorks! You didn’t give up on us, and because of that we want to be a blessing to you and give back to others.’”
The unexpected gift was not only a blessing to GraceWorks and the community, but it helped staff and volunteers remember that GraceWorks does make a difference, Ertel said.
“We don’t always get to see the full circle of how God is working in our community, but days like that are wonderful reminders of His grace and love for all of us.”
— by Kathi McClure