One Small Thing
You shall live in booths for seven days ...so that your generations may know that I made the people of Israel live in booths. . . . —Leviticus 23:42–43 (NRSV)
It all started one night when I was passing out sandwiches and fruit at the homeless shelter. There was talk of some city councilors who opposed the shelter, dismissing those who needed it. Rich, a Vietnam vet whose life had never been the same since he’d fought the Tet Offensive, looked at me with anguish. “What does homeless mean? Do they know that we’re parents and laid-off workers and vets? That some of us are really sick or addicted?”
I merely nodded in sympathy, not knowing what to say. I’m not a great talker, but the one thing I knew I could do was to write about homelessness. I hesitated though. Many people weren’t happy about the shelter; the local newspaper wasn’t supportive. But I also knew God had given me one gift and that He’d put Rich in my path to make me use it.
The next night at the shelter, after the article about Rich and homelessness appeared in our Sunday paper, he hugged me. “Marci, I can’t believe you wrote about me—about all of us! It will change how people look at us.”
It was like I’d given him an unimaginable gift. Yet all I’d done was the one small thing I could. I started to wonder what else was possible.
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