“Imagine all the people living life in peace…Imagine all the people sharing all the world…You may say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one…”. The song “Imagine” by John Lennon & Yoko Ono is iconic. In it, they encourage us to “imagine” a world of hope, peace, and unity. The song paints a picture of the possibilities of a better human existence. Can you imagine that?

But maybe tackling the world is too daunting. If you’re like me, words like global, worldwide and universal can be overwhelming. And though my heart aches for my brothers and sisters suffering affliction all over the world, I am compelled to look in my own “backyard” to see what, if anything, I can do there first. So, I ask you…

Can you imagine our community being a place where everyone lives in a safe, decent home? A home that has clean, running water, safe electrical systems, a roof that doesn’t leak, a foundation that isn’t falling apart, one that doesn’t have moldy windows and rotted out floors. Can you imagine that?

Unfortunately, many of our neighbors can’t imagine that, because their reality is the opposite of that. Their roofs leak, their faucets run, their windows and doors are drafty, and they side-step holes in their floors. And when you don’t have a decent roof over your head, it’s hard to imagine anything hopeful, peaceful or unifying about the world.

But maybe you’re thinking, “none of my neighbors live like that”. Well, how would you define

neighbor”? In the New Testament, Jesus tells us the second great commandment is to love thy neighbor as thyself. When He said “neighbor”, he wasn’t referring to the folks that live on either side of you. He was referring to every human being on this earth. So, when a group of us decided to host a community workday event here in Jacksonville, we decided to call it, Neighbors Helping Neighbors because that’s exactly what it is.

Right here in Jacksonville, we have neighbors that don’t have safe, decent roofs over their heads. But we can change that, one neighbor, one house at a time. But we can’t do it alone, we need your help, neighbor.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors will be held Saturday, March 21. Volunteers are still needed to help with landscaping, painting and light woodwork. Registration will be held at 1st United Methodist Church and will begin at 8 a.m. Breakfast and lunch will be served.

To register, please call 903-586-2494.

Submitted by:

Letitia Horace (720-684-7597) a volunteer with the Cherokee County Housing Council of the East Texas Human Needs Network

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