Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover
Such an overused phrase, yet it’s a phrase I heard growing up and it’s a phrase I repeat to my own kids.
It applies to so many facets of life especially how we deal with our fellow people. Whether it be our neighbors, or co-workers, or random strangers, we have no right to judge other people. It doesn’t matter their weight, their height, or the color of their skin. No judgment.
I recently had the privilege of reading a book that reinforced this concept.
More than Just Making It by Erin Odom, a fellow blogger, is a book about facing financial adversity, accepting that there comes a point where you need help, and the preconceived judgment that comes with allowing the government to provide assistance. I was given an advanced copy to review for this blog post.
In many ways, this book has hit home because I’ve been in that position. My husband and I were very young parents and when our first daughter was born, we needed Medicaid and WIC. The sheer uncomfortable feeling of going to those government offices, of taking the required classes, and handing over those WIC vouchers in the store, with a line behind you, it does a lot to your self-esteem and confidence.
Being judged was commonplace. Not outwardly, but the looks. I was still a kid and already living off the government. It didn’t matter that I was still in school, those people behind me in line didn’t know that. They only knew what they saw. A young Mexican girl and her hippie long haired husband.
Trials and Tribulations
More Than Just Making It is Erin’s story of struggle and of facing judgment. It is a story of accepting help from her church and other parishioners, and the humbling experience and lessons these trying times created.
Erin unabashedly shares her story and different strategies she utilized in saving money, of stretching her few dollars as far as possible. She offers suggestions based on her experienced of what worked while they tried to hold out until the next payday.
There are chapters regarding meal planning, shopping secondhand, shopping at home first and then shopping sales.
Although I am not a religious person, I didn’t find her religious references overbearing or preachy. They illustrated her belief system and how she kept faith during dark times.
We all face struggles at some point, and More Than Just Making It is a poignant reminder that we all encounter tumultuous times and instead of judging those who walk next to us, offer up kindness. It can help way more than one can imagine. Erin has a name for this: Kisses From Jesus. They are little things that happen that help at a time help is most needed. It might be in the form of money, or extra fruit from someone’s yard, or it might be a job offer at just the right time.