WOW! What words do I use? How do you explain homelessness in the most wealthy country? So many people covering up the pain, hiding from their past, and tucking in under a bridge for the night. Probably many nights to come, and many have past, and they continue to seek shelter were they feel "at home" under a bridge. Some that I talked to can quote scripture better then me. Most appear more intelligent, or at least street wise and most if not all will look you in the eye and tell you their story and journey. Yet, the police man/guard, protector of the streets the one we are to "feel"safe around, past me by with out a glance or a return nod of the head. (Maybe, just maybe, he was having what he would call a "bad day".) There are the on-lookers that seem to appreciate and for lack of better words "cheer" you on with their looks and nods. The out of townee is amazed, and the homeless are great full. I was a bit restless and more conscious as I hung out with friends later in a warm restaurant eating WAY to much hot food. And as I lay in my comfortable bed, and tried to remember the names and the faces of the people I met that night on the street. My heart breaks once again knowing they are out in the cold, hopefully warm and little more hopeful then the night past. I could not help but wonder did they see Jesus in me and my genuine care for their health and spiritual well being? Did they just see the cookie? Or maybe it was the HOT Chocolate that warmed them for a moment? Did they remember me after the peanut butter got un-stuck from their mouth? I don't really want them to remember me, but Jesus in me and realize that a relationship with Him is far better then cookies, no matter if you are homeless or not.
~These were/are my thoughts after I spent Friday night in down town Portland working with a ministry called "Bridge Town." This ministry genuinely cares for the needy.~
Provers 31:8-9 Says,
"Speak up for those who cannot speak up for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly defend the rights of the poor and needy."