Diners and servers alike carried the food from the cars to the picnic tables. Through practice we can set up within ten minutes---first the table cloths, then the plates and forks at the start of the line, the lasagna, salad, and rolls in the middle, and the lemonade at the end. The crowd grew to 60 people by the time our seminarian was ready to bless the proceedings.
brown-bag meals for the diners to take home. Everyone was friendly and appreciative; there would be no repetition of last year’s incident.
I chatted amicably with a gentleman who had fallen on hard times. He was younger than I, but alcohol, injury, and years of exposure to the elements made him look much older. He was already a grandfather, yet he didn’t have a relation who would take him in. I had no words of wisdom that could fix his life and could only give him a sympathetic ear.
We cleaned the tables and trundled the dirty dishes back to the church. The satisfaction of a job well done was dampened by the difficult circumstances of the people we met. A world of unlimited needs---the core of both economic theory and Christian guilt.
Whenever I grow smug about my good works (and conveniently forget the other stuff), I think about much farther I have to go:
if any one would sue you and take your coat, let him have your cloak as well; and if any one forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. [Matt 5:40-41]An impossible standard? Julio Diaz is an example of someone who can walk the talk.
He was walking toward the stairs when a teenage boy approached and pulled out a knife.Read the whole thing. © 2008 Stephen Yuen
"He wants my money, so I just gave him my wallet and told him, 'Here you go,'" Diaz says.
As the teen began to walk away, Diaz told him, "Hey, wait a minute. You forgot something. If you're going to be robbing people for the rest of the night, you might as well take my coat to keep you warm."