Sunday, March 28, 2010
He's Down But Not Out
I'm sure there's a reasonable rationale for the policy; I'm just not aware of it. To my knowledge, most of the Peoria facilities that house the homeless overnight discharge them by 5:30-6:30 a.m. and they are not allowed to return until evening. As far as I know, on a Sunday morning there is no place that serves a meal to the homeless. For the past year our church has opened up our tiny, narrow office downtown to serve breakfast. My wife and I serve on the team that provides these men and women food, clothing, and conversation each Sunday.
One of the homeless is a young, quiet, unassuming guy. He's reserved; he makes no trouble. One of those guys that has little "voice" and could go unnoticed and disappear off the face of the earth. Last week, some thugs nearly bludgeoned him from this life. He showed up for breakfast, and I noticed huge greenish-yellow bruises around his eyes and jaws. I asked him what happened. He was hard to understand because his jaws weren't working properly, preventing him from speaking clearly. He told me he was walking down a street after dark and some thugs jumped him and proceeded to use his face for batting practice. They had an aluminum baseball bat and took home-run swings at his head and face.
He is having surgery this Thursday. A surgeon is going to insert metal plates and screws under his eye and in his jaws. The outcome remains to be seen.
Jesus promised, "The meek shall inherit the earth." This meek man inherited a baseball bat. This morning we fed him what he was able to swallow. He's having to swallow a lot these days. Respecting him, I didn't press him, but asked him if he would like several of us to pray for him. He was appreciative. I rounded up a couple of younger guys on our team and we prayed for Kyle. He thanked us and then walked out into the damp, cold morning.
God, we do what we can do. Thursday, would you please do what you can do? Amen.