newsdog Facebook

Be a faithful shoulder

Jamaica Gleaner 2020-01-15 06:59:00

Hello mi neighbour! As we speak, there are countless millions across the globe who have been knocked off their balance by circumstances and, to date, have not yet steadied themselves. Many persons seen as gadflies and sources of annoyance, do suffer such fate and could do with a little of your attention! Are you one of them? If we are too busy to listen to another man’s story, we could miss one of life’s real purposes for us at that critical moment of existence.

While rushing for an appointment a few days ago, I was intercepted by a troubled woman at the gate. Okay, I decided to give her just five ‘deggeh’ minutes, but after 15 minutes, I was still listening to her story.

Her husband of 10 years was threatening to kill her because she was now a liability. Madness! A motor vehicle accident and two strokes have slowed her down and she needs a listening ear. Now half an hour has passed and I am torn. How do I tear myself away from this neighbour to meet my appointment?

By now, the husband was present. They needed guidance. Both parties had personal issues which they could not handle on their own. They desperately needed someone to talk with.

You would be amazed at what a little time and a good conversation can accomplished in the lives of people who are knocked off balance. What if no one listened to them that day? Yes, they are being monitored.

Michelle also has a story. A woman was sitting by herself in the back of a building where she (Michelle) had gone to take care of a matter. Though she recognised that Michelle was busy, in desperation she begged for her listening ear.

She was running away from her boyfriend, who threatened her with bodily harm! She had no job, no money, no food and no friend. By the end of the day, the woman found a friend, food and a job, leaving Michelle the rich satisfaction of steadying an off-balanced neighbour. Now, if you understand that we are all here to complement (and compliment, if I may) one another, you will understand why we are fitted with shoulders. Life does knock us off balance, at times and had it not been for the faithful shoulder of another, there could have been a fatal fall.

The strong and well balanced should not trust in their strength and resourcefulness, for in the fullness of time their strength may be toppled, leaving them no option but to lean on someone else. That’s just part of being human.

If you see someone looking off-balanced in your travels today, do not hesitate to help them. Believe it or not, this could be the moment for which you were born. “All of us are here because all of us are here”.

Had it not been for engines, there would be no need for engine oil. Affirm with me: I am here because another brother/sister is here. They need me; I need them. So, love your neighbour as yourself, and do unto others as you would have them do unto you, beginning with the list below:


1. Everybody’s Pharmacy for act of neighbourliness.

2. Novie, St Andrew, for donating a laptop to neighbour.

3. Kerine, St Andrew for donation.

4. Nadine, for donation.

5. Valrie, USA, for donation of food items.


1. Donna, St Thomas – unemployed stroke victim in need of financial assistance to start chicken rearing.

2. Mrs Campbell – widow, in need of a walker, suffered a stroke. Also in need of a small refrigerator and a few sheets of zinc for roof.

3. Junior, St Mary – unemployed. Needs a pair of size-nine sneakers, a radio, food, curtains and assistance to set up a little stall in his community.

To help, please call Silton Townsend @ 876-334-8165, 876-884-3866, or deposit to acct # 351 044 276 NCB. Alternatively, send donations to HELLO NEIGHBOUR c/o 53 Half-Way Tree Road, Kingston 10. Paypal/credit card. Email: Contact email: Visit Mr Townsend exclusively manages the collections and distributions mentioned in this column and is neither an employee nor agent of The Gleaner.