The call to service, after a recent brief trip to NZ, has had an impact on me.
Not only was it a passion of those I travelled with it was modelled in the way life is lived.
I spent time with people from all walks of life.
Some with whom it may one day be illegal hangout with, but which I will anyway.
People who are ‘doing’ life differently regardless of ‘societal norms’.
Have conversed, eaten, drank and been shown hospitality as a stranger.
The call to serve the broken, poor, lonely, widowed, prisoner, isolated, sojourner and the stranger is still as valid as at any other time in history.
This prayer written by someone else is for all who go into the difficult places in life;
“It’s the choice between the easy way and the right way.”
God helps those who help themselves.
Everything happens for a reason.
The Bible clearly says….
Love the sinner; hate the sin.
It must be true, it’s in the Bible.
I’ll pray for you.
Hi Fred how are you today?
I’m busier than a one legged man in a bum kicking contest!!
Being busy, it seems to me, has become a badge of honour over the years.
Growing up in a farming community describing someone as a ‘hard worker,’ was seen as a good thing, even if the reality was that same person was bad tempered and sometimes violent.
I find myself some days falling into the same trap, making myself busy as if to justify my own existence and self worth.
I had time to reflect on this recently as I ‘loitered’ with intent on the Melbourne Streets.
As I wandered around one of the usual locations watching the world go by
that troubled feeling that I was not ‘doing’ anything engulfed me.
Continuing to wander and watch, catching peoples eyes and smiling, I noticed a elderly lady, who was sitting not far from me.
She caught my eye because she looked at peace with the world.
I noticed after sometime she was struggling to get up from the seat.
I wandered over and asked if she would like a hand. She agreed and after I helped her up, I went back to loitering and watching.
The struggle of ‘doing’ and ‘being’ was again foremost on my mind, when a bloke, approached me.
He was no stranger, we had chatted only weeks earlier, when he reminded me we had met at his cousins funeral some eight years earlier, which I had conducted.
Battle scared from living rough, he was on for a chat, so we did.
After a while he thanked me for the time spent with him, and he hugged me.
This man was homeless and alienated from his family through drug abuse and violence was grateful for the time spent with him, reminded me again, that ‘being’ is a good thing/
As we parted company we agreed that next time we met we would have a meal together.
I returned to where I was ‘loitering’ vowing to never underestimate the value of ‘being’.
As I sat on the street last week, the day after Melbourne Cup, and observed an interaction between a woman dressed in red and a man on the street.
The man is a regular on the street, his hands and fingers are curled either from arthritis or medication, supported by pillows and covered in a blanket, he shakes almost uncontrollable at times.
As this woman, dressed in a red dress passed by, she noticed this man, stopped, took some money from her purse, put it in the container next to him.
It is what happened next which warmed me, she took his hand and, as she held it gently, looked him in the face and spoke to him, before departing.
It is easy to be cynical of humanity, but in this encounter I believe this man encountered Jesus.
We are indeed God’s children and he is not far from anyone of us.
Category : streets
A simple sign this week
In Flanders FieldsJohn McCraeIn Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place, and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe!
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high!
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields
Have just returned from four days away with sisters and brothers from all over Australia and some from the UK.