My sister picked my son Oren up for a trip to grammy and papa’s. They made a quick “it’s 7:30 am and coffee is mandatory” pit stop at a coffee stand. During their wait, my sister noticed a disheveled man digging through the garbage, she ordered a coffee for him as well.
My son in the back sitting in his booster seat said, “Auntie, why did you give that coffee to that grandpa?”
My sister said to him, “Well Oren, that grandpa doesn’t have a home and he probably doesn’t have much food that’s why he’s in the garbage. He probably doesn’t get coffee either so I thought maybe he’d like a hot coffee too”.
Oren, “Some grandpa’s really don’t have homes or food or water? That’s so sad.”
The following morning, I could tell something was on O’s mind. I asked, “Whatcha thinkin about little bear?”
How do you answer that, especially for a four year old whose heart has been pricked with grieving for the loss of home for this one man? How do you carefully tread your words to preserve the innocence of little boy who doesn’t understand drugs, mental health problems, alchohol or the affects those things have on a person’s life?
I responded with the best words I could, “Well…it’s complicated little bear. Sometimes, people like that grandpa you saw make bad choices, and sometimes a lot of bad stuff happened and they just don’t have a home anymore”.
“Oh” followed by silence and then a, “Hey mom, do you think that when we see grandpas without homes we could always give a coffee? or food?or could we maybe help them find a home?”
Silent tears started falling down my cheeks, my heart pricked by the things Jesus and a bright blue eyed boy grieve over.
The world sees a man stuck on the street, but my 4 yr old sees what Jesus does– a grandpa in need of a home and a good cup of coffee.
Matthew 25:35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’