Let me tell you what my life is like now. I own a house. With another guy, who is married to a great lady. That makes three of us owning this one house. We started this “community” lifestyle 2 years ago where about 20 of us (now) live downtown Rochester in a neighborhood called “Kutzky Park”. We started it for a variety of reasons, and in the beginning was not in a state anything like it’s present state. But the focus has always been about two things, and two things only: Jesus, and relationships.
We believe that Jesus didn’t die just for our sins, he died for relationships.
We believe that it is not enough to give money to the poor. Charity is good, but as Shane Claiborne said, the problem with Charity is that the poor go away fed, and the rich go away feeling good about themselves, but there is no relationships created between the two.
Right now, I have two homeless people living at my house. It used to be I would say that to try to get people to see how “spiritual” I am. Right now I don’t have the energy left for that shit. I just love these people. I want to store up riches in Heaven, and more than anything, I want to see both of these men where God wants them. One we helped get out from under a bridge, and one was a “couch-surfer” we like so much we have been blessed to have him stay on. There are from two different paths of life and are here for 2 different reasons. But really, it’s only 1 reason. God wants them here, and we are trying to love them. I say “trying” not because it’s hard to love them, but because my own pride, ignorance, and fears keep me from seeing them like Jesus does sometimes.
I can’t tell you the complications in keeping things focused on simple love with 6 grown men living together from such varied backgrounds. But so far, it is good. It is just plain good.
Jesus didn’t have a house, but he had homes everywhere He went.
Whatever happened to “give us this day our daily bread?”
I will die an ordinary radical. Somebody who, thank God and halleluiah, has lived only for the sake of Jesus and community. (The two are not equal, but are absolutely intertwined).
I just got back from a three-week trip to India and Nepal. I can not, and do not want, to live without the simple position of time alone with Jesus ever again. America- there is a spirit over us that causes us to put every possible distraction above time alone with the Lord. We covet these distractions more than the God who loves us so much he gave everything to save us and be in relationship with us. I include myself in “America”. At least, I WAS like that. I pray to God that I am now changed, and that I can live opposed to this powerful torrent of distractions in our culture that wants nothing more than to rip us from the arms of One who loves us more than anything.
I know this blog post is a random mash of feelings and observations, oftentimes unrelated, but I’m too at peace and not willing to make it flow better for you right now, dear reader. Grab from it what is good, and just try to digest what I have to say separately from the rest of the post if necessary. I’m going to ramble.
I have been quiet since I came back. My old, social, talkative self has not resurfaced. I feel oddly out of place with all of my old friends.
I don’t know why.
Was it the kids in the railway station in Jaipur with broken legs that fought with each other? Was it the other homeless kids there that I gave a piece of candy to, only to have them run 10 yards away and have a fistfight break out for the candy with other homeless kids? Was it my fucking lack of ability to do anything more than hold as many of them as I could, and give them love?
How many kids have to die of hunger, disease, and literal “survival of the fittest”- even with kids their own age- before the governments of nations will wake up and HELP?!?!! Have you ever really SEEN survival of the fittest??? I did- right there.
The answer if it was left to governments- it would take an eternity. Because governments are not the answer. We are. Governments change only as a result of people’s expressions and prayers. This is why I will fight. I will fight for that boy at the railway station that I just held onto when the other, older kid went around punching him for no good reason. I will fight any government that says “YOU CAN’T TAKE OUR CHILDREN” when they starve begging for candy and rupees as tourists travel from seeing camels to the Taj Mahal. I WILL FIGHT UNTIL MY DYING BREATH TO BREAK THIS SYSTEM. (And it WILL change!)
Thank God this has been solidified in me!! There are SO MANY people, GOOD people, that want to adopt!! So many more that could be ENCOURAGED to DO SO!!!!!! And I have within me the power to change people’s lives by promoting this- adoption. I pray for the political partners as well as the media partners to change lives!!!
I can change the world. Not because it sounds cool- because of that one kid I held at the railway station. Because of the abuse I saw. And because it is what Jesus has allowed me to do.
One final note- to the governments of the world that charge thousands of dollars to take children off of your streets, all the while abusing them and allowing them to be abused in any way possible- I’m coming for you- with a vengence- and with the power of the Holy Spirit!!!! You WILL change!!!!