While at our missionary training, the idea of beggars came up. It's a hard subject. No one really wants to deal with it. No one really wants to talk about it. There are no real answers, only difficult questions, and so, everyone avoids it. Or speaks about it in vague language.
I can speak. I have no fear. Beggars. No matter who they are, are humans. Created, just as I am, in the image of the Creator. Even the ones who are scams. Even the ones who trade their pennies and dollars in for liqueur and cigarettes.
When I became a child of Christ, I became a new creation- with new eyes.
For so long I have not been able to explain why the talk of beggars as scum makes me so angry with my brothers and sisters in the Lord. No one wants to be a doormat. No one wants to be ripped off. Everyone has better things to do than to waste time thinking about the man at the end of the exit ramp holding up a sign. Everyone would rather focus on the fact that he is wearing name brand tennis shoes, and that he looks like he belongs on sexual offender list.
But. Christ himself was not afraid to talk about this issue. He was not afraid to see it for what it is, and not afraid to do something about it.
"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'
"They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?'
"He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'
but the righteous to eternal life."
My friend Val posted this video on her blog. My heart leaped for joy, because it illustrated so perfectly what I hold to be truth.
HISTORIA DE UN LETRERO (THE STORY OF A SIGN)
The way we see things can change the world.
Who is a beggar?
Just a chance. For us to practice our new vision.
It's a beautiful day. And I can see it.