Fly, Man, Soil, Girl

February 24, 2009

Two foxes from yesterday:

· A dead house fly on the sidewalk, his abdomen a lacquered black and his legs sprouting from it like tiny, crooked weeds. How did that fly survive so long in the cold? Where did he come from? Why did he catch my attention?

· An older homeless man with the heebies jeebies. By heebies jeebies, I mean his body was gyrating and twitching as he was walking south on Broadway. I’ve seen him before. Summer or winter, he is always wearing the same clothes—a long-sleeved blue button-up shirt tucked into dark slacks. Black leather shoes. He has charcoal skin, and his hair is gray wool. The way he’s dressed, you might think he was going to make a deposit at his bank, but if you watch him, you will think immediately, “He’s not right. There’s something wrong with him.” He gesticulates, throwing an arm into the air as if to punctuate the climax of an oration. He quivers, and his head jerks to one side. His flesh always seems to be moving. Something tortures him, writhes inside of him. He reminds me that scripture talks about demons. I want to pick him up and carry him somewhere safe. I feel my powerlessness every time I see him. Once, I walked right past him, huddled underneath an awning at Three Rivers Market, his shirt soaked to a dark blue, rain coursing down his face. He held his thin body and

doorway1shivered, and I wonder, What is God’s answer to the question of this bankrupt soul? What is my answer to that, my own question? I am not the Good Samaritan, but I want to be.

Two foxes from today:

· Workmen on Market Square came with tillers and churned the pale, withered grass and packed earth into a rich brown. Spring is coming, and I feel my spirit rise like sap.

· A yellow school bus held up the right lane of traffic as it stopped in front of Knoxville Area Rescue Ministries. A slender girl ran off the bus into the arms of her older sister. I’d never thought about that: homeless families with children who go to school and when their classmates ask, they have to say they live at KARM. They have to say that they’re homeless. I ask God, “Why are children homeless?” knowing that He may never answer. I may never understand, yet I believe that the Father desires that I ask and still trust His Goodness. Mysteries of Mysteries. Lord, please come lift that girl and her family out of poverty. How can I participate in your works of redemption here and now?

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One Response to “Fly, Man, Soil, Girl”

  1. Erin Says:

    Beautifully thought, and expressed.


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