Today I met a woman named V. She is 99 and half and will be 100 in June. I don't think I have ever met anyone as old as her before. Talking with her touched my heart. Her hands were warm and she has a beautiful smile. She told us some random stories about her life making it clear she has seen a lot in her near century of life.
It was humbling for me to meet V. She and her daughter (who is in her 80s) live in a house that has fallen into disrepair. They nor their family have the means to fix it up. So with some fellow volunteers (with The Pittsburgh Project) I went to V's house for the day.
We painted and replaced part of the ceiling which had water damage. I also got to spend some quality time with V's great (possibly great great) grandchildren in between working. Somewhere in the midst of all this I realized as much as I like the practical help we were giving V and her family; it was meeting her that made the day special.
Their house isn't especially clean or nice. There is a lot of work that needs to be done. But even amongst that this place is already a home because of the people who live there. We were just helping to solidify their surroundings.
And that made today a gift. A blessing to me. This is the reason why I ride my bike with the Fuller Center. For people like V and her family. Whose surroundings need a little work to become a simple decent dwelling for the home which could be/is present there.
There are so many people like V, each with their own story and need. And when the opportunity arises for their stories to intersect mine, I am not sure who is more blessed by it.