Grace and Generosity Alive among the Homeless
Kathleen A. McGuire of Santa Barbara, CA, USA
But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within the, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. -Jeremiah 31:33
I just spent five days in San Francisco-a city of diversity and homelessness. It is filled with so much more. But these two aspects of this incredibly beautiful city really came alive to me.
I was on my way to visit what the locals call the Maytag Cathedral. The top looks like the inside of a washing machine-the inside the most beautiful creative representation of a cross.
I stopped for a Starbucks coffee on the way. Outside was a homeless person with a dog-always a heart breaker for me. I gave him a dollar and we chatted. Another homeless person walked by with his dog named Chico. Chico looked well fed and clean despite the condition of his owner. Shortly after that I walked a short block to the bus stop to head to the cathedral, and there was another homeless man with a dog at the bus stop. I sat down and began another conversation only to find that he had lived in my city and knew all the places I mentioned to him. I felt such a bond with him knowing he had walked the same streets I had.
We were nearing the end of our conversation when the man with Chico appeared. He held out a can of dog food. It had been opened, and perhaps 1/4 of the dog food was gone. He said to the homeless man at the bus stop, “Would your dog eat this? Chico has eaten all he will for today.”
Tears flooded my eyes as I witnessed this act of generosity from one who had literally nothing, offering the last of what he had so that another man’s dog could eat. I witnessed the type of faith that we as Saints are called to have. This man had faith that there would be food provided tomorrow. That faith might not have been in the God that you and I worship, but his faith touched me in a dramatic way that exposed my lack of it!
I am about to do a new thing, now it springs forth… (Isaiah 43:19).
A New Thing
Breathe deeply and listen within. Where is the Spirit doing a new thing in you? How do you feel about the new thing that might be emerging? Are you excited, resistant, fearful, hopeful? Take whatever you are experiencing to prayer. Breathe deeply and listen around you. Where is the Spirit doing a new thing in your community? Pay attention to how it feels to discern the Spirit’s activity and presence within and around you.
Today’s Prayer for Peace
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