Ok….a little change of pace. What about the homeless in our community? Are they invited to church? Lunch after? Do you have a personal friendship with anyone who has been homeless?
Here is why most church folks don’t hang out with the homeless. Many of the homeless are mentally ill and not treated. Bipolar disorder and schizophrenia cause unusual and unpredictable behavior. Neglect and abuse are common in the homeless population. Alcohol and drug abuse are common. Medical conditions like hypertension and diabetes are exacerbated by mental illness, bad diet and non- compliance with medication. Additional stress of heat in the summer and cold in the winter contribute to growing health problems. Most of the homeless are “single” though many may be legally married. Companionship is difficult and trust had to come by.
Now! Take away the definition “homeless” and you define many of the mainstream church population….we are all about two weeks of income away from financial disaster. Thousands fear a loss of home daily. We need to look around and not treat the homeless as “those people” but see many who need a hand up. Cook a little extra and share. Buy a meal. Give away socks. Everybody needs socks. Nurture your relationship and encourage the marriages that are struggling ( a divorce can cause another homeless person). Help a person keep a job instead of making them work harder. Listen to a friend…(even if you have seen it before)
Did Jesus have a solution for the homeless? Well, one time he cured an illness of a crazy guy who lived in the cemetery and then sent him out to be a missionary. Read about it ….Matthew 8:28-34