Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Hope Road Trip

I have noticed, especially lately, the astounding amount of people who seem to be hurting and living without happiness or hope. I find that incredibly distressing and I was mulling this over in my mind while on a road trip last week.

Everyone has a different story of how they ended up at a particular point in their lives. Circumstances tend to dictate people's happiness, unhappiness, faith, hope, hopelessness and their outlook on life in general. I believe a lot of people are suffering in silence because maybe they don't know that there are others out there who truly care about them and their hurts. Or maybe, it's because we are so focused on our own problems in life that we tend to forget there are others worse off than us and we're not taking the time to show we care. I know I'm guilty of this. I wonder if taking an interest in the hurting and listening to their stories would allow a bit of hope to creep back into their lives.

As I was driving I thought about this and then came up with a totally crazy idea of what I would do to get their stories heard. It's called a road trip across America in my RV, with a video camera and the laptop (sounds like a different kind of reality show and seriously, these things just pop into my head).

Imagine the stories you'd hear sitting on a total strangers front porch or at a hole in the wall cafe in Small Town, USA. Or what about at an inner-city slum? Perhaps the people in the Great Plains have similar stories to those in the deep South. And while inner-city life dynamics may not be the same as small town dynamics when it comes right down to it people feel pain regardless of where they live and that is their common thread. Hopelessness has no prejudice and it doesn't care where one resides.

What if people realized there were others out there who had the same struggles and because they were able to tell their stories, found a network of people who could help them out. It might light a small spark of hope and get them through another day.

While I realize the whole concept of jumping in an RV and taking off across the country is a little out there, the idea of seeking out others who needs some hope isn't.

So, let's brainstorm. What can we do to spread a little happiness and spark some hope in others. Do you know someone who is in desperate need of those things or maybe you are that person. I encourage you to share your story because you're amongst friends here.


sherri said...

Annie- I think that is a BRILLIANT idea! You should do it! Even if right now, the video just goes on your blog as you are able to find and interact with these people. These could lead to touching lives of so many!

Can you imagaine, filming my friend CHeryl, shaven head and all telling about her cancer struggle? Asking for prayer? Would the visual help you to remember to pray for her or connect more with her struggle? (And I'm NOT just saying it because she just so happens to live in MY town, so that could be your first stop!)

It's really not a crazy idea. Even if you just start where you are, you will probably find so many hurting people that you'll never get out of town!

I'm serious. Think this thing through. I believe you're on to something!

Wendy said...

You should do this! And of course, bring Boz with you. That would be cool if you could make it happen!

Annie K said...

I guess I didn't really take myself seriously when the idea popped into my head...logistics and all.


Diane said...

LOVE this. Have you read The Freedom Writers Diary? 'Cause that's how that whole class of kids was inspired to move beyond their circumstances to become successful students... their teacher introduced them to books and people who shared their experiences and made them feel not-so-alone. Reading it was a wonderful, eye-opening, disturbing, heart-warming experience.

Amrita said...

You are right Annie. When we focus only on ourselves we just tend to moan and groan a little louder. When ever I go through a rough patch now I keep saying to myself over and over again I AM NOT THE ONLT ONE, and THERE ARE OTHERS WORSE OFF. Of course in my country where such unequality and injustice sxists you find that at every turn

Sometimes I am afraid to share my struggles openly as I might be misunderstood of judged.

Billy Coffey said...

I think this is exactly the sort of thing that people need right now. What a great idea!

The Homefront said...

Definitely take the Boz...after unburdening themselves of their troubles, a little puppy lovin' could make a world of difference. Seeing others' suffering without a point of hope would only bring everyone down (having watched plenty of documentaries on war zones, poverty, class and gender warfare...I can testify to that!) Seeing these people rising above their suffering...that's the gem in it all.

Excellent idea! Let's do this thing. :)