Thursday, July 2, 2009


From guest blogger and BH servant extraordinaire, Michelle:

Last week at Broken Hearts was quite special. I actually felt loved amongst the people of the streets. It wasn't I who was going out of my way to love them but I too felt loved in return. Clay, a homeless 16 year old, who I have been seeing reoccuringly for the past 3 weeks, saw me and gave me a huge hug. Then I saw Preston who is 19 and I always felt somewhat kindred to.

Preston and Clay considered themselves "brothers" and it was nice to see that they cared about one another. Preston likes going to the Refuge but Clay hates anything Christian-associated so he obviously wanted NOTHING to do with it even though he was starving and knew there was going to be pizza. He and Preston ended up coming...and staying.

I met John the week before last and he likes to come out to the streets to "observe" not partake. He considers himself a Christian but doesn't want to be preached at. He came out to the Refuge too.. and liked it. Hopefully he'll come again with his friend Jonathan.

Toward the end of Refuge as the night was coming to an end, I see a guy I had never seen before moping around the parking lot with a deflated football. He stood there awkwardly. I approached him and offered to play ball with him which he then replied that he 'can't catch or throw'. I left a short proximity between us and we played a game of feeble football pass. We ended up talking the whole night. Antquan quietly came up behind us on the window sill to pray for our conversation.

Bruce is from Seattle and moved out the LA 15 years ago. He smoked his first joint when he was 6 because his mom was a drug addict. He was exposed to drug abuse at an early age and eventually fell into it which led to jail 3-4 times. He has never lasted rehab for more than 12 hours. He went to a Jehovah's Witness church but doesn't consider himself under any religion. He takes bits and peices of what is "nice" and applicable to his own life. He knows his Bible but totally misinterpreted it. His knowledge and explanations had many contradictions but it was good for him to hear what he was saying because it did not make sense and he knew that. He got frustrated over it.

I let him do the talking and I just wanted to understand what he meant...It wasn't my place to convince or explain. I simply needed to listen to him and be in tune with the spirit. Anyways, frustration led him to exit and I felt like I did a poor job of being a "messenger of Christ" since I never explained anything. As he briskly left the lot, Antquan darted after him and told me to come along. Antquan affirmed Bruce and told him that he was VERY thankful that he was so frank and honest. Then Antquan encouraged me and I felt so humbled by his words.

Thanks for sharing, Michelle!

I too have wondered if I've really been a "messenger of Christ" and felt I should have said more. But I can also say that at times people just need to be heard. And Bruce got to vocalize his contradicting thoughts and beliefs and hear it himself, rather than be told his thinking was faulty. Most likely, realizing it on his own was more powerful than you saying anything. And maybe now that he's felt heard and understood, he'll be more open to hearing the truth and confronting his misunderstandings.

No comments: