I Cried With a Homeless Man Tonight

(Written 30.January.2012)

I haven’t cried this hard since my wife’s sister passed. And I immediately desired to give this man everything I had. Yet what I had fiscally didn’t seem enough. He just knelt there, as I came out of the drugstore, and could barely get out a request for spare change. I pulled the cash I had from my wallet, walked over, knelt down, and gave it to him, asking what was wrong. He told me—in between sobs, that he had to put his dog down this afternoon. Sammie Dapple. That was the dog’s name. She was a dapple dachshund. And the man—“Boston”, blamed himself. “I should’ve had her checked every year. I just couldn’t afford it. It was all my fault.

I knelt there, holding a man I’d just met; knowing exactly the feeling he felt. I could do nothing, for I knew nothing would help. So I just held him, and cried with him, as he described Sammie and how she had little spots on her back—distinguishing marks of the breed, and cried, and talked about how hard it’s been, and cried, and how Sammie would curl up on his neck each night as he slept, and cried.

Eventually, the moment passed, and Boston went on his way, still crying, apologizing for disrupting my evening.

My evening. As if what he was used to saying to those that turned a blind eye to a man in need on a regular basis applied in this case, tonight.

A rush of emotions filled my heart, flooding my mind with thoughts and things I wished to convey. Of a love that covers all, that suffers with all, that suffers long, pursues long. Of a God who is there, who created each and every one of us specially.

Who loves us for no reason.

Created us for no reason but love.
And loves us for no reason but that we were created.

That there will be an end to all of this suffering.

That we are still being made in his image. That we didn’t screw up His plan—but that it was all part of His plan that we screw up.
That the things that keep us from Him—the shame, the blame, are necessary. For the sin that keeps us from God shows us how much He loves for no reason. For nothing of our own accord.

That there will be an end to all this. There will be a 7th day. A day of rest, when God declares it all “good.”

When a man who calls himself Boston will see the only thing that ever allowed him to experience love—a little Dapple Dachshund named Sammie, once again.

But not now.

What now?

Now all I can do is cry with him. And share with him a moment when others–when I, could’ve just walked on by.

This is the only song that has been running through my mind tonight.

I don’t know you but I want you
All the more for that
Words fall through me and always fool me
And I can’t react

You have suffered enough and what with yourself
It’s time that you won

Take this sinking boat and point it home
We’ve still got time, raise your hopeful voice
You had the choice, you’ve made it now

Falling slowly, eyes that know me
And I can’t go back
Moods that take me and erase me
And I’ll paint it black

Games that never amount
To more than themselves
Will play themselves out

Take this sinking boat and point it home
We’ve still got time, raise your hopeful voice
You had the choice, you’ve made it now

1 Comment

Filed under God stuff, Tragedy

One response to “I Cried With a Homeless Man Tonight

  1. Chris

    Compassion is one of the greatest gifts God has endowed the human race. Thanks for sharing.

    Your friend, Chris.

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