On the way to the church, I had seen a man standing on the corner of Farnam and Saddle Creek Road with a cardboard sign that said, “HOMELESS – EVERYTHING HELPS.” Beggars are not uncommon in this half of town, and when I see them, I always think of “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.” God gave me a weak spot in my heart for beggars. When I look at them I can’t see anything but Jesus. If I can, I give them what they ask for.I have a feeling Mother Teresa approved heartily of Brad following his convictions. Go read the entire thing. It makes me remember that it is easy to talk, not so easy to do. But we must all make the effort or no one ever steps out and does an act of kindness for anyone.
So today I got back in my car and drove to that intersection. The man was still there. I parked in the lot behind him and approached him. He was an older man, a Native American with longer, wispy gray hair, wrinkles, and a few missing teeth. He wore a Colorado Rockies jacket over a thin dark tank-top. He greeted me with a mixture of hope and uncertainty.
“Hi,” I said. “I don’t have any cash with me, but if you’re hungry I’ll buy you dinner across the street.” I gestured to the Don and Millie’s restaurant on the other side of Saddle Creek.
“You want to?” he asked with just a shade of disbelief.
“Yeah, if you’re hungry,” I said. He nodded and folded his sign into a tattered backpack. “Meet me there, ok?” I said. He nodded again and went to cross the street. I drove my car around to the restaurant (not easily – from that corner, it involved two U-turns).
We went inside and I noticed he smelled strongly of alcohol. I asked him what he wanted. He briefly examined the menu, then said “Whatever is cheapest.”
“No, what do you want?” I said. ...