Tears Streamed down his face as he wept uncontrollably. He was huddled against a light pole in the middle of a Parking Lot, homeless and in need.
We had just finished delivering hot meals that had been prepared and were about to head to the next location. As I pulled toward the busy intersection I saw him in my driver side mirror. I felt compelled to stop my vehicle and got out and began walking over to him. As I approached the man, one of the guys on our team Tony, signaled me to his vehicle. I was very resistant. Didn’t he see what was going on? Didn’t he realize that we needed to check on this man who was obviously hurting? But he insisted that I come, so I obliged my friend. What’s going on? I asked him. “Remember when he asked us for a pair of shoes, well I gave him mine”. “Ok”, I said. “Well let’s go see what’s wrong”. All along focusing on the man, and the state he was in. As I approached the side of the man in distress, I saw a pair of shoes at his feet.
Some of our team had made it to his side by this time, and I watched as Tony got out and walked toward the gentleman. To my surprise, he walked over in a pair of white socks. And then it dawned on me, what impacted this man so much. You see as Tony was about to leave with the group to deliver at the next location, the Lord had put it on his heart to ask the man what size of shoe he wore. The man gave him his size, and it happened to be the same as Tony’s. Tony literally took the shoes off of his own feet and gave them to the man thinking nothing else of it. I had assumed he had an extra pair in the trunk of his car but he literally gave him the shoes off his own feet. It was this act of kindness that had so moved our new friend to tears. As we kneeled next to him, we began to pray with him and he asked the Lord into his life and for restoration.
It was an incredible moment to see how impactful a single action can be. When I think about the teams we lead, and how they make a difference, I am increasingly challenged to love more. I hear stories like this one, and think to myself I wish I was that guy-the one that gave his shoes, or his coat. I don’t want to take anything away from my friend, because he challenged me on a whole new level,but I think sometimes we forget about all those that give in the small things. Sometimes we make giving so hard because we are looking for this super hero opportunity to save the day, and yet every single person that cooked, packed the meals, and delivered on teams made a difference and shared in the transformation that occurred in that man’s life.
After this amazing encounter we continued to deliver to the homeless. We met, fed, and prayed with men and women across Northern Houston delivering over 100 meals. On the way home, as we were headed back, I saw two homeless men on the side of the road, next to an overpass we had visited earlier in the day. They were both sitting beside each other, and I watched as the man I recognized was sharing the meal he had just received from us with his friend. He had little, and yet was willing to share much. I can’t help think to myself how many of us have much, and yet share little. As we celebrate this holiday season let’s make it a point to love, to give, and to share more.