I set off today in search of a homeless person. Long story short. Bryan got a GREAT jacket from the Beltline Railroad. He has too many jackets so this one was earmarked for PIN Ministries. I got a burr in my fur and decided that I would personally hand this to a homeless person. TODAY. At the beach. Off went Cora and I. with a carload of determination and donations.
first stop: Birdneck and Va. Bch Blvd. GREAT spot. plenty of homeless. they used to live in the woods right there. easy job right? WRONG. Lot's of people. but were they homeless? no. just standing at the bustop. well . shoot. now , How do you walk up and ask. hi, i have a free jacket. are you homeless? are you cold? moving on
second stop: Judeo Christian Outreach. many people milling around. but Cora had a great observation. Mom. they all have jackets.
onward: looking for someone with a shopping cart. or a bike filled with bags....rainy days are NOT good days to find homeless. they are hunkered down. hiding out. fading into corners. sliding in the library to stay warm.
third stop: boardwalk...I have not cruised the strip in years. but to cruise looking for a homeless person well now I have NEVER done that. Cora is a good lookout. I hear from the back seat: Look a worker man. No mom he has a vest. I tell her and remind myself that many homeless have jobs. shame on us for pigeon holing the homeless and saying they will be laying around all day waiting for the nice Christian Lady to drop a free jacket in their hands.
we move on...taking the back streets...crawling along near grocery stores. o there 's a a man. He is coming out of 7-11. Cora says but he has food. well you can still be homeless and have change for a Big Bite I explain.
Then we roll past two gentlemen on bikes. they are bundled up quite well. one smiles and waves to me. I wave back. wondering if I just missed my big chance to give the coat.
We approach Birdneck Rd and I turn left off Norfolk Ave. onward to P.I.N. Ministries...I am forlorn. I found no one to give the jacket. so I will take it to the Pros....Pin finds homeless, helps homeless, gives them medical attention, food , love, God. they will find the Jacket a great home. The perfect home.
As I drove home deflated by not accomplishing what I had set out to do I realized that I had accomplished more. I had taught Cora that the Homeless don't "LOOK" a certain way. Homeless have jobs, nice clothing and don't just hang out on corners. They don't stick out like a sore thumb. They are everywhere and we can't see them.
It could be the child at your school or the coworker at that fortune 500 company that sleeps in their car. Most of us are one paycheck away from bad times. I learned a lot while tooling around the oceanfront with a preschooler today. You are never too old to learn...keep your ears open and your eye peeled...there's a lesson right around the corner if you pay attention