Uniting Jews, Catholics, Protestants, All Believers Under God of The Holy Bible, Speaking Truth in Love.
Louie E. Johnston Jr., Founderwww.ChristianPatriots.usChristian Patriots Historian, Minister, Author, Speaker
Evangelicals canlearn from Mormons!
(Layman Lessons Ministries feeds 150 chronic Homeless every Saturday morning, hot or cold, in an open downtown parking lot, providing a free mobile clothing/toiletries store for the Homeless, hot banquet lunch, sack lunch/bottled water to go, one million “cups of cold water in Jesus name”, Church services, counseling and opportunity to change.)
We had stopped serving plates of food to the homeless seated at our tables, many were leaving, we began taking down our tables, after 3 hours on the hot sun baked asphalt parking lot…ready to pack up and leave for cool air conditioned cars/homes.
I was closing on stage, reminding our homeless guests to pick up their sack lunches and iced bottled waters on their way out the gate.
A wild eyed homeless man staggered to the stage, yelling loudly “help me I need food”, saying he was going to pass out, he had not eaten for days. “Help me, Help me, I have to have something to eat and drink”…swaying as if he could not make another step without food…I could see he was “overly medicated” and that he was a mess, physically and mentally.
I nodded at Lois and she told him to “sit down right there at the table and we will bring you a plate.” When he stared at her blankly, she again pointed to the table and told him to sit down…then he focused on her and barked not to tell him what to do, but then immediately looked up at me and said “I’m sorry”…and sat compliantly.
We brought him a nice hot plate of food…he stared at it, looked around the table and said incredulously “Ain’t you got no salt and pepper? I don’t think I can eat this without salt and pepper!” But he did.
The tables and 120 chairs were cleaned and packed away for travel…he was still eating. I told our Volunteers this homeless man example is why we HAVE to have a time to quit serving food.
We packed up his table, bringing him a 2 shelf unit we use for the PA System, just the right height for him to use as a table. He just sat and ate slowly.
We packed up the Stage Trailer, the bus, held our Celebration Prayer for our Volunteer Team before we leave, and still he sits eating slowly, barely able to eat.
I admit I am ashamed to say I was agitated…drained from being in the hot sun all morning, I was ready to leave. I even had his metal fork and chair taken, hey it was past time to leave! I was checked in my spirit immediately…and gave the fork back to him to keep.
He staggered around the front of the bus holding his food plate, looking for shade, and his pants suddenly fell down below his ankles. He did not have legs, he had leg bones. He thought he did not have a belt, but he just needed to take it up a notch to keep his pants up. I was convicted. I almost missed this opportunity. I repented, right there.
I am ashamed to say I was agitated at being delayed from my “schedule”…no excuse for it. .
I am ashamed to say I thought more of “protecting ministry assets”, specifically volunteers time, a metal fork and good dinner plate than a poor wretched soul without a sound mind or hope.
I am ashamed to say I wanted to go home and sit in air conditioned comfort, more than I wanted to help this homeless man in great need.
I am ashamed to say I almost missed the whole point of being a Christian by wanting to leave this homeless man a sack lunch and send him on his way, instead of sharing God’s love.
I am ashamed to say I told my fellow volunteers our schedule is more important than caring for the needy.
I am ashamed to say…most Christians and Churches should be ashamed, but say by word and deed daily their priorities are more important than God’s commands and Jesus’ commands to all Christians to “Feed the Hungry, Clothe the Naked”. I thank God for making me ashamed, for He truly “opened the eyes of my heart”…to see the evidently invisible nation of Homeless souls.
Louie Johnston, Servant Director