Sunday, October 07, 2007

evang-e-droppings #006

The Evang-e-droppings Eradication Operation is proving to be an ulterior operation of the CEO to expose the ills of my heart and mind.

The operation itself is fairly uneventful. This weekend we collected an average number of 33 tracts. Last week was 22. I blame the low numbers on the wind. Nice to know that those guilt inflicting devices are now littering some other block in the fair mother city.

Meanwhile, in recent weeks I shifted our operation to a time of day different from when this deal started two months ago. This new time was better for my family and I.

This new earlier time happens to be when several local homeless folks pass through the area. We ran into Little Wing again. We exchanged pleasantries and I introduced him to my wife and daughter as he was passing through en route to the Salvation Army. But then I later saw him alone on a secluded curb with a cigarette.

Over the years, I’ve seen examples of the poverty class being uncomfortable by the middle class. Which is usually true the other way around. I wondered if Little Wing had made up an excuse to not have to converse with Agent Wife and myself for long. Or maybe he really wanted to be left alone. Either way, I can relate.

Then we ran into Mack near his usual set of benches. I finally discovered who Mack was. He’s the uncle of Agent Wife’s young friend Princess (the incarcerated teen). The poverty culture in the fair mother city is fairly inbred. In more ways than one.

Mack’s a talker. And he’ll go on and on about how everyone on earth and his family all have problems, but makes himself sound like he’s got it all together. Even Stevie Wonder could see how that’s a crock: Mack’s homeless. People on the streets are almost always there due to some major issue in their life.

As he’s rambling on about how great he is, how Princess is messed up, how he’s the best parent his teen girls have ever had, and how he refuses to work for $6 an hour ($10, maybe) I’m thinking, “So is that why you’re on the streets? Because you’re a stellar father? And you’re worth a better wage? And everybody’s messed up but you?”. But I kept my mouth shut.

I hated going home knowing what I was thinking in my head.

Really, how am I any better than Mack?

What separates me from the Macks in our world?


Barbara said...

You aren't any better than Mack - but what separates you from him is your ability to see the less than stellar ideas/thoughts in your head for what they are instead of believing the lies for truth.

There's a big difference between speaking the lie, whether or not you know it's a lie; and thinking something hurtful and refraining from speaking it when you recognize it.

Agent B said...

Barbara: big thanks.

Your input here is priceless.

miller said...

i think the reasons you live as you do are far different than the reasons he lives as he does...

it makes a big difference


Talitha koum said...

(______________)is proving to be an ulterior operation of the CEO to expose the ills of my heart and mind.

(Insert the walk of my life here) I really believe most things I have experienced in my walk have 'told' of the refining and circumcision of flesh or self.
But, if you think that the complex issues that create a situation of homelessness in an individual are remotely comparable to your decision to be an Agent, I think your listening to a lie. What you are doing through conscious choice is an admirable calling that very few can pursue as a choice. The whole "camel through the eye of a needle thing." I realize it is hard to remain steadfast in the circumstance of 'in your face need,' just know that I believe in you and have faith for you and yours, even in difficult times. I speak strength , honor and peace over yours.

Agent B said...

Jack, Nurse - thanks for the encouraging words.

But note: you may be reading into my words deeper than I intended.

This is not a 'woe is me, it sucks to be an agent' kind of post. It's a mere confession.

I later saw some things I was thinking toward this guy. And they were wrong. "Who am I to judge him?" is the equivalent of "what separates me from Mack?"

And secondly, in all truthfulness, what separates any of us from the homeless? or poverty culture?

The first homeless guy I really got to know said he hit the streets when both his first, then second wife died. That's when I realized: that could be me. I don't know how I'd react to news of my wife passing. I don't want to find out.

Hopefully, I have enough friends to keep me from hitting the streets with Jack Daniels...