Yesterday I was leaving my house just in time to cross paths with Harold. He was walking down the street holding his backpack, sleeping bag and a small bag of groceries. I looked and him and said, "Hi there!" He said hello back. "How was your rest last night," I asked. "Oh, okay, I've only been here three days and have slept at Balboa. I've heard though that isn't a very safe place at night." "You've heard right, I know it's not a great place once the sun dissapears. Is there any way i can help you?" He didn't ask for anything. I then told him about our church that is with in walking distance from my home and invited him to come.
He said he would.
I went and picked up a few things for church and was on my way. I pulled up to the grade school where our church meets and there was Harold, talking with one of my friends. Harold helped us set up and then sat down and shared with us his story. He's been all over the place. He has worked hard, paid for mistakes of his past and is wanting to move forward. He told us of how he'd been taken advantage of and how he wants just simple things, like a janitorial job and a place to sleep. He lost his mom, dad and sister all within a period of five years and is now alone, in nearly every sense of the word.
I left our conversation with one phrase. Harold wants to remember he's human. He wants to feel connected to another human and wants nothing out of the ordinary. Just some dignity and someone to see him as a person and not an object.
Isn't that the truth for so many of us! We just need to be reminded we're human. We're not objects, we are people. We aren't careers, we are people.
We spent time calling shelters, drawing maps and helping Harold know he's not alone. He is not alone! It all started with a hello and quickly moved to church caring for him. Please pray for Harold as he is finding his way here in San Diego.