It’s 6:00 am and the guys are loading back on the bus heading back downtown to start another day on their own. It’s 15 degrees, spitting snow, and the bus is just now starting to put out some heat. On the way downtown I comment to one of the guys (Donnie) that I sure hate to have to drop them out in the cold. Donnie says don’t worry about it and then tells me a story.
He was sitting in a restaurant the other day and heard a lady talking about how sorry she felt for the homeless. Donnie tapped her on the shoulder and said, “I’m homeless but don’t feel sorry for me”. He told her he was where he was for a reason: it was his own doing and there was a purpose for it. He told her he needed to hit bottom and be humbled to set him straight. He said he gets along just fine and as far as he’s concerned he is right where God needs him to be right now, helping his homeless buddies where he can. When he got through all I could say was, “thanks for the dose of perspective Donnie”.
As I pull up to the drop off point, they all file off with a “thanks again bud” or “take care brother.” Though I’m usually dead tired from little sleep the night before and anxious to get home and get my own day started, the ride back to Church that day was energizing. It reminded me why we do what we do. We’re all called to serve each other . . . and in doing so God has a way of ministering to us as well. As Donnie said, “it’s his way of keeping us humble.”
Chris Lee for Room In The Inn at Tates Creek