I arrived at our weekly Jesus Was Homeless Thursday night meal delivery with a very heavy and saddened heart. A very close friend of mine had just been deeply hurt by someone whom she loved with all her heart. It really affected me to watch her absorb this difficult and unjust pain. I arrived feeling a million miles away but knew, as always, that God would meet me there. The night began with a very loyal volunteer pulling me aside and giving me a substantial check to help with the ministry. Being on the end of this outreach that knows the financial situation, that was a huge, “Thank you God!” moment. Having to rely on God to provide the people and money to keep this going has been eye opening for me. Our second hotel that we stopped at has a young woman living at whom I had previously heard her testimony at church detailing her drug addiction. She had, at one time, been a paramedic working with life flight in a neighboring city. She had shared how her drug addiction had cost her everything, including her career. When we got there, she was waiting for us with a beautiful smile and spirit. She was excited to share what God had been able to do there at the hotel through her willingness. She had been able to love, pray for and medically help the hurting right there where she lived. Wow, to see her excitement and total dependence upon a living God was all inspiring. We talked about her future plans and she began to share how she felt that maybe God wants her to stay right where she is so she can continue to reach out to those right there around her. Would I be willing to stay living in a weekly hotel (if I didn’t have to) in order to reach people for Christ? Hmmm…On we went to one hotel after another, seeing God show up in each one. My little Jamaican friend shared how her work had slowed down but that it was ok because it gave her more time to spend with God. I was secretly thinking, “oh no, what about your paycheck?” but saw her dependence upon God to meet all of her needs and that thought quickly went away. Whew, the lessons God teaches me every time I go to be with those “less fortunate” than myself. I can’t forget to mention the weekly warriors that I am so blessed to serve with every week. We have such a mix of friends who help with this outreach ranging from recovering addicts to C of O young people (with amazing character) to a local church group, my in-laws (how blessed am I?) and just everyday people who want to serve God. I can totally relate to Shrek when he tells Donkey that, “Life is like an onion-it has many layers”. This outreach is like an onion with layer upon layer of blessings and spiritual lessons that God is showing everyone involved.
Thank you Jesus!