Meals-on-Wheels is a meal delivery programme to meet the daily needs of the home-bound elderly. The elderly, who usually live alone, depend on volunteers from TOUCH Home Care’s Meals-on-Wheels to deliver their meals every day. (TOUCH Community Services)
For some time now Bernice and I have volunteered to help with the Meals-on-Wheels programme. We usually volunteer to deliver either lunches or dinners, once a week. It’s not much but we are convicted that this is something we should be doing. This is just a very small way we can bless others. Of course, as many who do this have discovered, both those who deliver meals and those who receive them learn and grow from the process. It definitely helps to put our struggles in perspective. It shows us how many have circumstances that are much more difficult than ours, and they model for us the values of resilience, courage, and gratitude.
We know that for many of the folks we serve, the knock on the door telling them that their food has arrived may be the only regular human contact they receive, especially those who, because of poor health, are not that ambulatory. Some wait by open doors for us. A few ask if we have eaten. Many give sincere thanks. We feel very privileged to be doing this.
I first gained a fresh perspective on the knock on the door that announced the arrival of food in 2020 when I was quarantined for two weeks in Penang before I could go visit my mum. I suffer from claustrophobia, so two weeks alone in a room was scary. But friends prayed and God was good. I survived my two weeks without having to take any anxiety medication. Wifi and the internet helped. But I realised that some of the highlights of every day were the three times someone would knock at my door to announce that food had been delivered — breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I soon began to look forward to these times because it would mean some human contact. I couldn’t talk to the folks delivering the food and they were in full PPE (personal protective equipment) gear. I could see them through the peep hole in the door but had no interaction with them. Still, that there was a human being in close proximity lifted my spirits.
I think now of the many home-bound elderly in the Meals-on-Wheels programme and how that knock on the door may mean more than we realise. I think of the height of the Covid emergency when we were not allowed to even see them. We had to leave the food and go. Perhaps that knock on the door still meant something. We are grateful that conditions are more relaxed now and that those who want more than just a knock on the door can get to say hello to another human being a few times a day.
We live in a lonely world and the year-end exacerbates this sense of loneliness. We have many reminders that Christmas is a time of community and joy, yet for many this is not anywhere near their experience. Christmas is as good a time as any to ask “Who needs a knock on the door?”. Because that is what Jesus did. He didn’t just bless us from far away. He came to us and He knocked on the door. And if we open the door and invite Him in we will have a party because He will bring with Him all the presents we really need.
P.S. If you’d also like to volunteer, please call 6804 6565 or email email@example.com