When it’s lost…go find it.

When we realise that something is missing we begin to search for it until we locate it. At least that is normally what we would do if it was of any value to us.

A few months back Freddie went to a part of town with a group of men and found homeless men scattered all over an area. He came back home and told me all about their outing and how we needed to try to help them. There is a church in the area that does look after them to some degree but many of their needs are going unmet.

A few weeks ago I told Missy and Freddie that it was time to go find these guys. It was a miserable day to say the least. The weather was around 35 and it had begun to sleet. I honestly thought the weather was really cool since I’m from PA and hadn’t seen weather like this in a very long time however my mind kept drifting to the men in the woods.

I told Freddie…the 14th Street Bridge guys have blankets, sleeping bags, heavy coats, gloves and hats but there are more out there that need help. We loaded the car with everything just mentioned and we hit the woods.

First spot we only found traces and evidence men were there and as we hiked through the woods you had the feeling that eyes were watching us. It was a good thirty minute hike in and out of that area and decided we would come back later. On down the road we went and entered the woods from another area. A hundred feet off the road tents appeared in the middle of no where. STILL! nobody was home yet again had a feeling we were being watched from behind trees and bushes. We left a few of the things we brought with us in one of the tents and again decided to come back another day.

Fifty feet down the road a homeless man on a bike rode up to us on the road. He was heading for a trail off the road. We knew one guy that lived in the area and asked him if David was in the woods. He said yes and then named off about 8 more names. He told us to follow the trail to a clearing where we would find a burn barrel and everyone would be there.

True to what the guy told us there they all were. I knew 2 of the guys from way back when I was drinking. We’re talking over 20 years ago. David was there and a woman named Sue that had been to our church many times the past 4 years. There was enough mouthwash sitting next to the folks that would make any local dentist proud however they weren’t gargling with it. Behind the burn barrel which I suppose you could say represented their living room sat a tent city. UNBELIEVABLE!

Everyone was so happy to see us and wanted the truth on whether Tim had died or not. Word had gotten to their end of town and they needed to know. We filled them in on all the news we had from the 14th Street Bridge area. Who was in jail who wasn’t. Had we seen so and so. If not then we all assumed they were in jail.

They were so thrilled to have the blankets/sleeping bags, gloves etc. I was glad we found them. We have been back to see them and one of the men “Corky” was in ICU. Very sick from alcoholism. The camp reminds me of what we had on our hands 4 years ago. Filthy, dirty, smelly mouthwash drinkers that have lost all hope.

Pray? OH my goodness they want to pray. They drilled Freddie with questions about the bible. Much work to do. God is going to have to show me how to add this in and how to properly help them. It’s a different camp and for now I can’t go in without a man. I don’t feel safe yet. So I’ll be grabbing any man I can get to go with me when Freddie is busy.

 

I found also 2 more bridges that underneath homeless people are living. I went out one day by myself looking. “When something comes up missing…and it has any value…you go look for it.” Haven’t had the chance to get up under the bridges yet. But you already got it…I’ll get up under there before long.

Found in the woods...shelter

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2 Responses to “When it’s lost…go find it.”

  1. When one door closes, another one opens. YOUR “men” are mostly taken care of and now you have another group waiting for you. Maybe you can move them closer to the church so you can serve them better…showers, food and clothing. And church and meetings…there’s so much to do…

  2. Chris you think like me…I need you down here! Moving them closer would be an impossibility. Meaning, where they are they feel safe and there is no way they will relocate. All the things you mentioned just aren’t that important to them “right now!” It took us really three years to get to where we are today with the 14th Street Bridge men. Soooo we do have a job ahead of us.
    However! I have already visioned a small place to shower eat and meetings in this area of town. Homeless Mexicans are Everywhere there also so we’re maybe talking a lot of HELP! Maybe this year will be the year I will be flooded with workers so I can be free to do what I do best 100%.


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