“To this very hour we go hungry and thirsty, we are in rags, we are brutally treated, we are homeless.” 1 Corinthians 4:11 (CEV)
By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
Homelessness has taken on a new face. Same issues of: displacement, embarrassment, resentment weighted down with discontent. The only difference is that we are seeing it in our immediate families.
We ride by the usual places, now we drive a little slower, looking more intimately for the unusual suspect, fearing that we will see one of our own.
How easy it is to speed by the beggars on our street corners, turning our heads to avoid eye contact, fixing this lie in our minds that if I don’t see them then they won’t see me.
We have fabricated this preconceived intention to avoid this nonhuman entity because in our minds eye, it really does not exist.
It does not subsist because we think we have killed it by turning our heads and removing it from our sights. You may not see it but like weeds in a well manicured yard, there is plenty of trouble underneath.
Like most things that have deep roots if the ‘root’ of the problem is not addressed, then nothing will change; the problem will be recurring.
The difference in the homeless situation now is that the weeds (problem) have left the vacant lots, come into our yards and now they are creeping into our homes. We know the homeless personally.
One would like to believe that we are so inclined to concern ourselves with the plight of our families that we will do what is necessary to elevate or assist them in overcoming unwanted situations, even if it’s for a little while.
We like to honestly accept as truth that there are those who want to be homeless; all homeless people are not mentality insane. Even if they are, you aren’t, so what would make you feel like that?
You just don’t care-it’s not me so why should I give a damn!
That’s the same kind of attitude that seeps into the spirit and that caused the first murder. “Then the LORD said to Cain, ‘Where is your brother Abel?’ ‘I don’t know,’ he replied. ‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’” Genesis 4:9
Yes, we are committing murder when we force ourselves to turn aside from addressing the issues of homelessness. We will have to one way or another.
Up close and personal or from a distance, homelessness is more pervasive and all-encompassing than ever before and if unchecked, it will swallow us up whole.
As with any problem or task, the first thing to do is to prepare yourself. Arm yourself with information; seek out people who are experienced in the matter and understand the goal that you are trying to accomplish.
“But more than anything else put God’s work first and do what he wants. Then the other things will be yours as well.” Matthew 6:33
If we are truly concerned about where we are headed spiritually, then our outlook on the less fortunate should direct our course of action while we wrestle with which position we should be in to lend a hand.
Family members or not, we are all one family.
The king will answer, “Whenever you did it for any of my people, no matter how unimportant they seemed, you did it for me.” Matthew 25:40
Homelessness has become more than being without a home. Must we continue to make it to mean without a family?
“When I stopped looking and visited the homeless under the tree, I discovered that those homeless people looked a lot like me. So I began to visit more regularly and discovered that they did not want sympathy; what they wanted was to be treated like family.” — Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
ONE LOVE, ONE GOD, ONE FAMILY.