Thursday, January 11, 2018

The Widow's Might!

Having trouble making ends meet?

Not uncommon these days, no matter what the pols in Washington think or say. Many people in the low and even middle-income brackets are struggling. If you dig a little deeper into the numbers, you’ll see that while the stock market is breaking all records, wage increases are not.

Those of us whose parents and forefathers lived through the depression can tell major stories about how to get by with very little.

But that’s not my focus today. I’m asking, once again, that you take a look at a prisoner situation.

A very nice woman in Huron Valley emailed me a few days ago: The store list changed recently, and the prices of everything keep going up. For example, tuna was 2.25 now its 2.70! The pay rate for prisoner jobs hasn’t increased, so how can the cost of essentials and healthy food options continue to rise?

And if you haven’t had pay raises to match inflation over the years, imagine the plight of Michigan prisoners who’ve had no pay raises. In years! And the going rate? Well, maybe 84 cents a day, or, if they have a good job, $3.34 a day. Not an hour, a day!

The reason Laura was concerned about the price of tuna is because the prison cuisine is so unpleasant and so inadequate that innovative inmates have learned to create delicious dishes with items from the store and from vending machines. Dan emailed us the other day: Gilberto made pizzas using saltine crackers as the crust. Surprisingly, it worked out quite well. G once had his own taco shop, so his cooking skills are unrivaled.

Many of these innovative people behind bars are blessed with a delightful spirit not only of survival, but of converting negatives into positives.

And that’s not just true of their menu planning. It also applies to their budget planning.

This week HFP received a check from Mike’s prison account, through the State of Michigan, for $5.00. It’s not much, but it was all I could afford right now!

Not much! Not much when you earn a buck a day? A 5-dollar gift from a prisoner to support the work of HFP is, to quote a major newsmaker, HUGE! We’ve received some beautiful gifts over the holidays. None tops this one.

The title I’ve given this blog is THE WIDOW’S MIGHT. Correctly spelled. Mike’s tithe, supporting our work among prisoners, makes a mighty statement. His generosity is a mighty example.

And it makes us mighty proud!