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Publisher: Strangers helping strangers should be celebrated

Hurricane Michael was a strong one that brought widespread damage to Crisp and surrounding counties. We now have to gather as a community and help our neighbors.

Thousands of people still are in crisis, whether it be no power, no homes, or a whole lot of cleanup that needs to be done. The toughest challenges are ahead of us as we move forward in the next couple of weeks.

That’s why we need a strong, sustained community, not only in our actual recovery work, but in ensuring we don’t let Michael’s ongoing impact slip too far from our minds. We have a wonderful Sheriff that has taken charge of this devastation with force, leading his deputies here and the ones that came from another county just to help us out. One day we may need to return the favor.

Strangers helping strangers are important and need to be celebrated.  Instead of driving by, sight-seeing, pointing fingers and saying “hey look at their yard or home,” we need to come together, get out of the car, put some gloves on and ask “do you need any help?” We also know from experience that storms can be a heavy toll on people who already are vulnerable — the poor, elderly, disabled and those with chronic health problems come to mind. These storms do not discriminate and we shouldn’t either.

So let’s step back and take a breath, and get that needed help out there for someone who needs it.  Be the rock that our neighbors need!

Matthew 8:23-27 says, “And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him.  And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep.  And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish.  And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.  But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!

Chris Lewis is the publisher of the Cordele Dispatch.