I'm a mama. I have a mama's heart, and my mama's heart is breaking as the "homeless" cease to be easily dismissed nameless, faceless old men with signs on the side of the road and become people with names, and faces, and stories. This transformation has come as a result of serving lunch at the local Union Gospel Mission twice a month with my children. Everyone of the people I've see at in the lunch line were tiny newborn babies once, just as precious the babies I've held in my arms.
Homelessness is a hot topic. Many people have strong opinions on what the causes are and what should be done about "the problem." Most everyone in America has driven past a homeless beggar holding a sign, usually on a freeway on-ramp or off-ramp. And the problem seems to be getting worse.
We struggle with the question; should we give homeless people money, or not? If we do, how do we know they won't use it to buy drugs or alcohol? If we don't, how do we deal with that nagging voice in our head? A few years ago, the local news station did an investigative report on street beggars, revealing that they can actually make hundreds of dollars a day. So, do they really need the money or are we being scammed?!
Picture holding a precious baby in your arms. Now, picture that baby all grown up, hungry, cold, and alone in a very dangerous and hostile world, homeless. Is that a life you want for your children? Is it the life their mamas wanted for them?
The way I look at Scripture, the homeless are our neighbors. We're supposed to love them as we love ourselves, and I doubt anyone reading this blog would choose to be homeless and hungry if they had an option. How will you answer the question, "If I were homeless, how would I want to be treated?" For me, it means packing up my kids and driving down to the mission to devote some time to serve lunch with a smile and kind word. I don't know what it means to you, but my challenge to you is; think about it.