Seeing Jesus …

Last night my youngest and I served dinner at the Denver Rescue Mission. It had been a while since I’d been there. I usually feel God in places like the Mission and wonder why I’m not there all the time by the end of it. But last night even was cooler than usual. There were a few quite stunning moments where I literally felt like I was looking at Jesus when I looked up at a man from my pot of soy sauce or salad dressing. I had never felt quite like that before. I had simply been hoping the men would feel valued and encouraged by a smile, a brief word, or just our attempts to serve them. I wish I could express how real it felt, that glimpse of Jesus. I looked twice several times trying to see him again, but I’d see a scruffy and ashamed young man standing in front of me, or a man who wouldn’t let me even look in his eyes. Even thinking of it now, my heart feels overwhelmed. It really took me aback. It was incredible. I feel so selfish wanting to go back soon in the hopes of seeing that glimpse again. I think it motivates me more than compassion. Is that o’kay? Last night after weeks of tossing and turning at night, I slept like a baby feeling God’s peace and presence still with me.

Watching my son …

It was great being there with my son, watching the guys seem to soften as they were served by a 13 year old boy. I saw a distinct difference as they appeared to drop their guard as they approached him and made their requests. With the rest of us they were often abrupt or guarded. My son was just enjoying himself and working hard. He would apologize if he’d slop their plate slightly and constantly checked to make sure they were happy before they moved on.

Last night it poured with rain. What was it like for those 181 men getting through the night. Not many slept at the shelter. Where did they sleep? Did they sleep?

Seeing his heart …

On the way home my son told me about a paper he wrote in class that day. It was meant to be about a  dream and about an inspiring moment or person.

The dream he stated simply … to have the opportunity to give extravagantly. He was surprised when others read their dreams of great wealth, elaborate homes, and possessions and that their dream ended there … with no follow up to use it to touch others.  

The inspiring person was a man he met and worked alongside in Juarez when he was building a house for a homeless family. This man had lived the worst life imaginable, committing unspeakable crimes. In a Mexican prison he met Jesus. Upon release from prison he returned to the community and the people he’d hurt so badly and sought to serve them and bring healing to the victims. He now works full time for the ministry we serve with in Juarez, pouring out his life, longing to be used by God to help others.

Hearing his heart was so much better than my feeble attempt to summarize what he shared in words.

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