Time to say goodbye!

Today I feel a bit sad as I prepare to write.

I have made a decision my blog on the 14th Street Bridge will be coming to a close. After today I will no longer be posting anything new.

Please believe me when I say this is not what I really want to do but it is what I need to do. The work I have been doing with the Homeless the past 4 1/2 years is far from complete however I am moving into a new direction which will be much greater than before. Once it is up and off the ground I will begin a new blog and will post the address on face book and through e-mail. I will possibly move to another blog site as well. WordPress has been great but for security reasons I’ll begin the new one under a new domain. I am excited and I do hope everyone will bear with me as I allow God to continue to give me direction.

The past 7 months have actually been the greatest growing time I personally have had and I think I boldly can say as a church it has been wonderful. A new direction is unfolding and we haven’t missed a beat with God.

You see no matter what many may say I, WE, are right in the heartbeat of God. That gives us a lot of comfort.

Quickly let me slide into how Tony Boy is doing. He was stable when they released him from a hospital in Columbus. I went to see him that day and found him sitting at his window watching for me and his ride. He was startled when I walked into his room but greeted me with a big smile.

For whatever reason the week Missy and I visited Tony before he left the hospital all he wanted to do was talk about his family, ex-wives, dreams. Often for hours we ended up just listening as story after story poured from his lips. If I needed to go it took at least 45 more minutes to exit the door because his stories never seemed to want to end. Tony didn’t want us to go… you see.

His friend Bob came and did take him home. Last week we called to ck on him. He is on life support in a hospital in Albany Georgia. He had yet another heart attack and won’t be here much longer. I wanted to go see him but I knew in my heart that this time I wasn’t going to be the one to sit at his side. I felt much comfort as I let out a huge sigh realising I don’t have to walk this one into death. My job with Tony Boy was finished.

Yes it may seem hard, but this friends is one thing God is pulling me back from right now. I have seen so much death and heartache that emotionally I need R&R for awhile.

Donnie, Earl, Shaky, Mike visit the county jails regularly. I do thank God…for now it is what I believe keeps them alive. Pete, Petra, Don the great one, Hard Hat Joe, Timmy, Homer, Randy, Tommy, Steve, Larry, Louis, Jonathan, Bin Ladin keep company with each other under the bridges. Tom, Dale, Ed W., Robert and Carl still are staying in a house and off the streets. Sonny is dieing and it could be any day we get that call. He’s in and out of the hospital a lot. We visit Joe Joe at the nursing home every week. He always is so happy to see us. He no longer has his feeding tube and still has hope he’ll walk again. He told me yesterday through very slurred speech that he would never drink again. If he went back to the streets…I know he would.

 Haven’t heard from Street Mary in months. She has adjusted to her apartment and today I find it difficult to recall her camp along the riverbank. Every so often I stop and get out just to peak over the edge of the cliff to see traces of what use to be her camp. Splintered pieces of wood, ropes still hang in trees. Old blankets are in piles slowly decaying with the help of the weather. Others have set up camps yet nobody has had one as grand as “Street Marys” camp.

Tony Day is doing fantastic. He is clean and sober and also has a job. Red, last we heard..sober and has his own apartment. Air Force Joe is in prison in S.C. An old warrant caught up to him and he won’t get out till 2013.

Today I think about the many stories I have written hoping and trying to bring awareness to people the great need we have in our cities and towns that homelessness is alive and well desperately needing help! I have tried through words explain lives like yours and mine are inside the dirt and smell of a human being that has settled to live slightly lower than my two dogs in my back yard.

To some that may say it too plainly yet I could dress my words to allow a slight fragrance to seep through my words however bad is bad and that is what homelessness is…It’s bad! I desperately have tried to get people to see it and smell it just like it really is. Some tasted and never walked away. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Missy in particular never could figure out why I even bothered to stop and talk to them. She was always in a hurry to move along and I always lagged behind. Neither one of us knows when it happened but she finally got it! She has been more than a trooper. If I’m stepping through a wasteland of human beings still breathing than she’s following behind. So many of the stories I have told here on the blog Missy has walked with me every step of the way.

We’ve walked through fields, behind buildings, inside abandoned buildings, under buildings, under bridges down one way streets and found 3 ways out. She’s my friend that of the many steps I walked she made sure I never walked them alone. I love you Missy and thank you like you wouldn’t believe!

Missy cried when my tears went away.

I have seen so much. I have felt a love that reached deeper than any love I have ever felt in my entire life. It was a love that flowed out of a throne room in heaven that caused my heart to beat in rhythm to men and woman society said “Let them die!”

On the other hand more than those that have supported me… have walked away. I guess it was fun if they would give and I did the dirty work. When the building closed, so did their hearts of compassion for the homeless. So it does seem anyway. I and our church have been going strong for the past 7 months. We never quit and NOW we’re embarking on our greatest splendor with God and these people are nowhere to be found.

JOE JOE was a blast until he ended up in the nursing home. Nobody goes to visit him anymore.

I honestly do suppose I’ll understand it all when I get to heaven and I feel pity and not anger towards those that decided they had enough as they dusted off their polished shoes and walked away. Look it’s my blog…

My son asked me tonight when I was going to do something with the book I’ve written. It is one of those things on my list right now to accomplish. My second book will be taken from this blog. I started it and now too I must finish it.

My thoughts now remember all those that have died…Russell, Bobbie, Sue, Calvin, Jeff…oh gosh Jeff, how I wanted to know him more. Julian, Gary, Johnny, Jack W. Last but certainly not least “My Tim!” I miss him in a way no words can express and I still love him like no other.

Virginia who never would allow me to photograph her because of her wheelchair will be having breast surgery next week. Cancer! She’s scared, I’m scared for her.

Marty was beaten badly but will be OK! His buddy Mark left the streets.

I suppose I will end here…my list of men and woman could go on and on. I don’t want what I have had to end and in one sense it won’t however on the other hand it will. The new blog will explain it all. I am sad…and I am excited beyond any words.

I love you all for caring, for reading and trying to understand even when you didn’t. I have so much to do come August 1st. Please pray for my R&R. My emotions are in need of repair. My heart has to grow larger. This has been the wildest 4 1/2 years of my life. I wouldn’t go back and change a single thing.

I’m closing with my all time favorite picture of the 14th Street Bridge. It was winter and I never saw it like this before or since. The silence bruised my ears. It helped me see, these guys really ain’t that tough! I cried.

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2 Responses to “Time to say goodbye!”

  1. JAYE/MISSY THIS IS SO SAD I HAD TO CRY YOU ALL HAVE DID SUCH A WONDERFUL JOB BUT I UNDERSTAND THAT OUR HEAVENLY FATHER UP ABOVE ALWAYS HAS TO MOVE ALL OF US ON TO SPECIAL THINGS THAT HE HAS IN PLAN FOR EACH OF US YOU BOTH TAKE CARE/GOD BLESS

  2. Thanks Dyan I will keep you updated..God is moving, we aren’t done.


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