I have a genuine affection for my donors, customers and volunteers – so this week when a fairly regular donor phoned to say her 52 year old sister had passed away – I was sad and so sorry for her loss.
She didn’t call just to give me this news – but rather she and another sister were sorting through their third sister’s home and had furniture to donate. Dealing with donors who are dealing with the death of a loved one and contact Jubilee Furniture to donate good, usable furniture from the loved one’s home – is a common occurrence.
As I murmured my sympathies and offered my condolences – I felt a nudge to do more. The nudge is actually more like a tightening in my stomach that makes me feel a little sick since I know I’m about to reach out in a way that makes me vulnerable and it’s scary.
You see – I’m involved in a ministry at my church called Stephan Ministries whose mission is to equip regular men and women to walk through life’s challenges with hurting people – and people coping with grief definitely fall into this category.
Stephan Ministries’ founder, Dr. Kenneth Haugk, wrote a series of grief booklets after the death of his wife – which have been used for years and been very helpful to individuals dealing with the loss of a loved one.
So, what’s so scary about offering to mail out some booklets? It’s scary because they’re written from a faith perspective. Faith is a very personal thing. I had no idea if my donor would be offended.
My belief in God is central to who I am – but I would never want anyone to feel like I was forcing my faith down their throat – be it my donors, my customers or my volunteers.
Warning! Awkward segue.
If you were a customer this week and stopped in the store today between 1 and 8 or tomorrow between 9 and 4 – the following photos show you SOME of what you’d find in our 30,000 square feet of inventory:
this Rossetto glass top table has a fabulous – heavy – base. It’s priced only $145 due to several chips in the glass. Four leather chairs – one is ripped at the corner along the seam – priced $4 each (these chairs retail for $199 each)
Crate & Barrel slip-covered sofa – slip cover needs some spot cleaning – priced $225
white wicker hutch (designed to be put on top of something) priced $20; white wicker bookshelf is $30
showing some wear but overall a very nice leather sofa by Smithe Craft – priced $135
sweet student desk priced $35
there’s something super attractive about this muted floral sofa – priced $135
need some bling in your home? This metal and glass hall or sofa table delivers! Priced $60
excellent condition micro-fiber chair – sorta greenish/gray – priced $95
Teresa said this sofa is very comfortable! Blue curved sofa priced $95
side chairs by Directional priced $50 each; round side table for $10
here’s another piece made by the Italian company, Rossetto – gorgeous credenza, tons of storage (doors slide toward each other and there’s open storage with one shelf; three drawer in the middle of the piece) – perfect media piece – like new except for one small chip on a back edge – priced $325
CR Laine chair and ottoman – some minor wear – priced $95
gorgeous secretary priced $175
fun stackable chairs priced $60 for all four
very attractive media stand priced $125
there are two matching swivel, rocker/recliners – both in excellent condition – priced $75 each
this sofa needs to be professionally cleaned – but there is something very attractive about it (in my humble opinion) priced $40
comfy sofa – needs some adjusting of cushions and such – priced $40
this pine collection by Broyhill is in very good condition – table, 1 leaf and 6 chairs all for $225; matching two piece lighted china cabinet is $175; square end table for $40; square coffee table for $50
gorgeous pedestal table with two leaves – priced $145
oh my – what a fabulous retro chrome and formica top table with one leaf and four chairs (one chair is ripped) – priced $195 for the set
I’m in love with this vintage recliner – it’s super comfortable – admittedly rather masculine looking – priced $95
antique oak chair (looks rather royal doesn’t it?) priced $110; so cool carved nesting tables – priced $65 for the set
we’re selling this as a three piece sectional – but it would make for a mighty l-o-n-g sofa if you put the three pieces together. It’s more like a sofa w/chaise and an armless loveseat – there are kitty-like pulls along several corners and some minor spot cleaning is needed – but otherwise in good shape – priced $175 for the whole thing!
spot cleaning is also needed on this red micro-suede loveseat but otherwise in good condition – priced $45
fabulous walnut cedar chest with gorgeous carving – priced $195
To finish my story, I did volunteer to mail my donor the grief booklets and she appreciated – and accepted – my offer. She thought after she’d read them they might be helpful to her parents. Oh man – suddenly I thought of my 84 year old mother dealing with the loss of one of us “kids” and I wanted to cry.
If this series of booklets provides my donor and her parents one moment of peace and comfort during this devastating journey of grief – it will make my discomfort at offering so worth it – and, actually, seem rather ridiculous that I ever thought to hold back.
Never withhold hope or a hug to a hurting world, dear reader. Never. Yes –sometimes you’ll be pushed away but the times you aren’t are so very sweet.