Where There Is A Will There Is A Way
By Rev Paul N. Papas II
March 13, 2009
Even if you’ve never directly invested in the stock market it is hard not to know what is happening on Wall Street. Wall Street and Main Street are interconnected; they can not exist without each other. Although they may be portrayed as having opposite functions, it is not the case. This is not to excuse some of the greedy actions of some.
Businesses rely upon investor’s money. Investors look for a good return on their money to keep the money supply flowing to businesses. To increase the burden on the business lowers the investor’s return on investment, which in turn dries up the money supply to businesses. This money drought causes higher prices and job losses.
Job losses increase foreclosures and homelessness.
These events result in smaller government income.
Normally, when the government has less income it looks for ways to cut spending, as families do. Governments and families look at their budgets to see what programs or activities can be eliminated.
Unfortunately, government usually cuts funding or programs to those with the smallest voice….the disadvantaged. Mental Health programs seem to be one of the favorite targets of budget cuts. This would be a serious mistake especially now. We need to be prudent in our spending. Prudence should include support services for the disadvantaged, and those loosing their jobs and homes.
Those families making choices between food, rent, or heat usually don’t have health insurance. This leads to more costly emergency room visits placing another drain on our economy.
Tent cities are growing across the nation. These residents have many unmet needs because they lack a real address.
Depression and suicide rates increase when people’s view of their circumstances seems to be hopeless. Anxiety is heightened. Hospitalizations for the medical conditions of mental illness increase in distressed times.
It would be more cost effective and prudent to provide mental health services for all who are in need. It would be better to pay less while the need is less than to pay for expensive emergency room visits and hospitalizations. Look at it this way: it cost less to change the oil in your car regularly, than pay to replace a seized engine.
As people become desperate they could do desperate things which increase the crime rate. This does not mean that people who have mental health issues are more likely to commit crimes. Some of these desperate actions are as result of people trying to survive their tough times. Increased crime results in more costs and burdens placed upon the tax payers.
We can all do our part in the tough times. We are our brother’s keeper. We each can help a person in need according to our gifts and resources. One of easiest and simplest ways we can help is by using our ears twice as much as we use our mouths. Sometimes people can be helped by being heard and by being offered a kind word. How could we ever know what is really needed or what we could do to help unless we listen?
We can each make a difference. We can share our time and resources with those in need. This type of sharing would do more to stimulate people and lighten the burden of our government. This type of sharing is caring about your neighbor. This type of caring reduces stress and blesses the giver and receiver.
How many of your neighbors do you know?
Rev Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (located in MA and AZ), founder of the Family Renewal Center and current President of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Greater Framingham. NAMI Greater Framingham has support groups for family and friends in Framingham and Uxbridge, support groups for consumers in Marlboro and Framingham , and various Education Meetings on the first Thursday evenings of the months from September through May www.narrowpathministries.org, www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org, and www.namigreaterframingham.org