Nov 19, 2020

Man in a van...

 For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come. Hebrews 13:14

"Did you hear about the homeless man that died?"

I was just about to start my YogaFaith class when one of my students asked this. 

"Wait, what? You don't mean the homeless man that lived in the gold van...." I inquired. 

She responded, "Yes, I think that's him."

My heart sank. 

Please, Jesus, no more bad news. 

Collecting myself, I mustered my way through the class. 

As soon as I got to the privacy of my car, I wept. 

David, the homeless man in a van,  was my friend. I have written about him several times, here and here and here. 

We had talked countless times. 

Some friends and myself had tried very hard to share the gospel of Jesus with him. He refused to believe. 

Frustrated as we were, we decided that eventually he would believe. He just needed more time. 

God had brought him to my mind many times in the weeks leading up to his death. My husband had even seen him and talked to him very recently. 

I just keep asking The Lord, "What was the point? Why did you put him into my life?"

David was hard headed and stubborn and refused to believe anything I spoke of Jesus. But, he always listened. He always questioned. Then always, like clockwork...

He would shake his head and say, "Nahhhh."

As the days go by since his death, I see a little clearer now. 

I see not how I changed David's life...but how he changed mine. 

David opened my eyes to a world that I often do not see. 

After meeting David, I was jolted out of my comfort zone and into a cold, cruel, lonely reality that exists...

For so many.

God has put homeless people into my life for the past 8 years. Every one of them leaving scars on my heart. 

The first one was Zora, with the 8 children. All boys. 

I wanted to help her so badly...

Until the Lord spoke so clearly into my heart..."Jill, just be her friend. Nothing more. Nothing less."

And then there was the precious lady at the homeless shelter...

And then there was Robert....

And then, David. 

All 3 of them have changed me in different ways. 

All 3 of them did not need me...

But God knew how desperately I needed them. 

Often we don't recognize the pride, the self-centeredness, the greed, the glutton...

Until we are faced with the most humble souls on planet Earth.

Perhaps this is how the woman at the well felt when Jesus approached her. Naked in her sin. Uncovered. 

Yet, at the same time, her eyes were opened. She was made whole. 

I have no inspiring words to write.

I have no catchy story to tell. 

I just have to tell you about David. 

He was my friend. 

And I miss him already. 

My prayer for my friend is that he is finally Home. Resting his weary head in the Arms of Jesus. 

My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?

Nothing is impossible for those who believe...Mark 9:23

goodbye friend, 


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