So here’s the story…
With all of the issues at my house right now because of the laundry leak, I have a lot that needs to get done (flooring, painting, patching, etc.). The insurance estimates with my deductible taken out, I’m not left with enough to really get the full work done (mainly because I fail to see the point in paying to fix the carpet when my ultimate goal is to get rid of the nasty carpet altogether and put in wood floors). As a result, I’ve been trying to find someone to help me – at least to SHOW me how to do the work, and then possibly do it myself. My sister suggested asking the church for help – she said that the churches around her in Atlanta have ministries specifically for helping out in this kind of situation (single women who need stuff done around the house and don’t have a husband to help).
So, that in mind, I went to the ONLY Christians I know in the area to ask for help and they had responded that they would talk to the people in their church and see if they could get some deacons to lend a hand and come over to help me get some of the stuff done in the house that I need to get done. They said if I could send a list of to-do’s, they would meet with the deacons about it. I thought, “Wow, this is great – the body of Christ actually doing what the body of Christ is supposed to do!” I even told Colleen (my roommate) about it and thought what a great witness this was for her – and she was totally blown away that a church would do this for someone. So I sent the list.
Then yesterday I got an email back.
They basically said they had discussed it with the session and the session’s response was that because I’m not a regular attender or a member and I’m not in dire financial straits, about to be evicted, or on the brink of some other personal tragedy, that the church’s mercy ministry would be unable to help me because their funds and resources were limited.
I’m sorry….WHAT?! I mean seriously WHAT the HECK is THAT about?!?!?!?! I wrote back (nicely) and explained that I was truly not looking for any sort of financial assistance, but that I just need some help in doing some of the things on my list b/c, while I’m VERY capable for a single woman, I just lack the skillset to know how to even begin some of these projects on my list. Additionally, while I may not be in “dire financial straits” and can at least purchase all of the supplies I need to do the work to the house, I am not made of money and do not have enough to then pay for the professional labor to accomplish everything on top of it all.
I’m so frustrated I could just scream. I feel like anymore the church doesn’t know how to be the church. Have we become a country club now? Can you only expect support from the body of Christ when you’re a tithing member to that particular church in order to ask for help? And if that’s the case, what am I supposed to do – call Redeemer (where my membership still lies and my tithe still goes) and ask them to trek down to PA to help me out with some flooring installation?? I just can’t even begin to express my near-outrage at this… I would never in a million years tell another Christian I couldn’t find even a couple of hours on a Saturday afternoon to help with something because I wouldn’t get paid for it, or because they weren’t a member of the same church that I go to. That’s absurd. Can you imagine Jesus refusing to help or heal someone for any reason?
So I’ve basically had it. Guess I’m either going to have to deal with the ceiling holes and pad-less carpeting until I can freaking afford to have a contractor come in and do it b/c clearly I can’t count on the Christians. Not only that, but now I have to tell Colleen that they’re not going to come help – and what kind of witness is that?