Last night, Jonathan and I had an hour to sit down and talk at a coffee shop. While we were there, a man came in. He didn't look homeless, but did have the appearance of someone who was roughed up by the world a bit. His face was shaved, and he appeared to be fairly clean and dressed in somewhat clean and non-ripped clothes. He walked up to Jonathan and explained that he was trying to get to Penn and 10th, and said his name was Robert. He heard that there was a Nazarene church there that could help him. He had come all the way from Michigan and was trying to get to Arizona. He needed money for a cab ride to 10th and Penn to get some food and possibly some clothes. This intrigued me quite a bit, because normally people who are homeless may or may not have the audacity to walk into a nice coffee shop to ask for money, but this man was different somehow. It was something in his eyes.
Jonathan offered to give him a ride to 10th and Penn and he truly looked at us in shock. "Really? Most people these days don't trust someone that looks like myself to ride in a car with them. I'm a God-fearing man and I promise I'll treat you good. I thank you." He hopped in the front seat while Jonathan drove. As I sat in the back, I listened to this man explain where he had come from. He was going to Arizona to find his sister. He had served in the army for 7 years, and the government claimed that they had paid him too much every month, so they started taking money back from his paycheck every month in negative amounts. Well, it didn't take long from him to basically become homeless. He had nothing but one sleeping bag and a small bag of things.
As we drove, Robert asked us about God. "What do you believe in? Who is your God? Jehovah, Mary, Jesus? I'd love to know who you serve. Do you believe in heaven?" We explained our faith to him, and then he slowly began to open up about his own. He told us that he believed Jesus would care for his every need, and that he had a relationship with him. Robert said that God led him every day and watched over his every step to provide for anything he needed. He turned to Jonathan and said, "You know, I didn't know how to get to where I needed to go tonight, but God's spirit led me to you. I knew that you would help me. I didn't care what the people in the coffee shop thought of me. I just had to ask you, because that is where the Lord led me."
How would it be to live in faith like this? So much faith, that you have no money, no ride, and God still provides for your every need. As we got close to our destination I asked, "Robert? What would you say the biggest need in your life is?" I was truly curious what he would say."I need a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. I want to be closer to him every day. I really need that." That's what we all need really isn't it? More of Jesus.
We got out, shook hands, and I told him I would pray for him. As he looked at me for one long last stare, I'm telling you, it was as if I was looking into Jesus' eyes.