-- In His Strength: Homeless www.superfluousbanter.org

In His Strength

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength --- Philippians 4:13

Saturday, July 03, 2010


"I'm the one on the corner, a bottle in my hand. Sayin' 'no one understands the path that led me to losing everything that I held dear'..."

The sign, etched on cardboard in black ink, said one word...."starving"; an older gentleman seated down by the San Diego bay, hair scruffy and white, clothes disheveled and dirty. Some distance more a woman in a power chair (my first thought was "Good grief, where does she charge the battery!?") holding yet another sign, only this time I didn't catch what it said.

How do you respond... By quickly turning your head and walking away thankful you're not one of them? Belittling them (in your mind or to their face) for the situation they put themselves in? Or do you grieve for them, praying to God on their behalf as you quietly walk past?

How DO you pray for them? Knowing you'll most likely never see them again, and wishing that one prayer, your prayer, could change the situation immediately?
DO you wonder what their stories are, what they did before they were homeless? Or how they became homeless in the first place?

I thought of my good friend Richard Andrew and his story. I'll tell you what, after meeting Richard and hearing his testimony...I think differently when I see someone on the street, seeking a helping hand.

Those questions I posed earlier? Before meeting Richard I was the one to
try to avoid eye contact, wondering what it was that put them in that situation. I was afraid to look at them, afraid of offending them somehow, wondering what they would think of me if I did look their way as I just walked past.

Growing up I was told never to give them money as you didn't know what they were really going to do with it, whether it was going to be spent on drugs and alcohol. I was young and so I guess it planted a negative impression in my mind. Until now. I met Richard almost two years ago, and then I watched this . Now that I am once again living in So. Cal. where the homeless population is more evident, I am the one, heart aching, praying that somehow things could change for them.

As I type this I am reminded of college and a spring break missions trip I took to Las Vegas with Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship a couple of years ago. We visited two outreaches for homeless and helped out with serving meals, cleaning, repairs....whatever was needed. I sat there quite unsure of what I was supposed to do as no one really assigned me a task...., quietly asking God what it was I could do. "Just love on them". I talked to a family whom I found out came in once a week for a meal - mom, dad, and nine-year-old daughter. That place was called 'The Upper Room'. The second place we went to that week, 'The Open Door'.

I have worked on this post intermittantly for a couple of hours now, sorting through my thoughts of today (of which I cannot get out of my mind) hanging out with family and then coming back to this post and finishing just before bed; and now as I lay in bed wonder.....where are they now, those two people I saw today? Are they fed, where are they sleeping, are they warm?

"....To the good and the faithful, won't you look on them with My eyes?"

Labels: , , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home