Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Lorenzo is not just a name to me anymore. Lorenzo is a man. Lorenzo is a blessing. Lorenzo is a child of God. Yesterday I was sitting in an associational meeting when I received a text from a buddy of mine. He asked, "Do you know a cheap place for a guy to stay around the hospitals?" I said immediately and without thinking too much about it... "He can stay with us." My friend replied, "Define us." I thought that was strange because how many ways could that offer be taken. I clearly meant that he was welcome to stay with my family. After all, we have two extra rooms, two extra beds and live within a mile of 3 major Tacoma hospitals. We seemed to fit the profile for what he was looking for and I knew our place was cheap... free to be exact!

The texts went on to explain that Lorenzo was a homeless man that is having some health problems and was hoping his doctor appointment tomorrow (now today) would lead to scheduling the removal of his gallbladder. My friend said his house doesn't operate in a way where he could or would bring a strange homeless man in for the night. I stopped and reflected for a moment on how blessed I am as a man, a husband and as a follower of Christ. Now I realize that my mother and my in-laws are probably cringing right now, but I cannot read Matthew 25 and Acts 1:8 and proceed to turn the Lorenzo's of the world away. I combine Matthew 25 with Acts 1:8 because I obviously don't house every homeless person that I come across. However, the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, as promised to us in Acts 1:8, provides a great deal of discernment and faith in regard to loving and providing for "the least of these." I would say that more often than not, followers of Christ (myself included), ignore the Holy Spirit and therefore ignore a chance to love and provide for "the least of these," and by extension Jesus himself! My reflection in that moment was not only on how thankful I am for the abundant grace of Jesus in my life, but for a wife who trusts God, his plan and his protection enough to open our home to anyone and everyone that the Spirit leads to our door.

Well, it turns out that referring to Lorenzo as "the least of these" feels somewhat silly a day later. Lorenzo sat in the waiting room all day until I got back in town from my meeting at 6pm to pick him up. Did he complain? Not once (and believe me I know plenty of people who would not have hesitated to complain). I told Lorenzo that I had plans to watch UConn beat Butler with some friends (did I mention I picked UConn to win it all on my bracket) so he would have to come with me. Did he complain about that. Nope. That also led me to be thankful for the men in my church who also welcomed Lorenzo, a 55 year-old African American homeless man, into their home... no questions asked.

To bring this long story to a close, Lorenzo spent a great night in a warm bed last night. I believe he was blessed and encouraged in a small way and I hope and pray that he is coming back for our Community Group tonight and may spend another night with us. However, in all of that do you know who was the first one to bring up Jesus? It was Lorenzo. He began sharing his testimony with me. This morning he prayed for me before he left and he prayed for Kelli and Jagen who had already left for a doctors appointment.

Here I was thinking I was blessing Jesus by loving "the least of these" (and it did bless Jesus), but in reality Lorenzo was blessing me... one of the least... and teaching me a lot about real faith. Thanks Lorenzo. Whether I see you again or not. Thanks. And praise Jesus.

1 comment:

  1. This is an awesome story and a great example of bringing glory to God by serving others. Thank you all for listening to the call of God to serve him in Tacoma and take Lorenzo into your home. It is such an encouragement to hear stories like this. I hope that you all are doing well.