So, my husband and I are sitting in church and in walks a person who looks to be a vagabond of sorts, we'll just call him John. You know, wearing multiple layers, inappropriately dressed for the warm weather, clothing kind of unkempt, and dingy looking. However, we see a few people shake his hand and hug him, so we figure he must be a new member or something. On top of that, he has a Sprint Instinct mobile phone. Yeah, it was kind of weird that he was taking pictures of the service with his mobile device, but hey, different strokes for different folks. He was doing other weird things throughout service that my husband and I were making fun of, not that we were singling John out. We make fun of everyone!
A part of ministry in my church is making sure people who don't have transportation get a ride home after service. The person who needs a ride fills out a card that says where they are going and someone in the congregation, who is going in that way, will volunteer to give them a ride. Since my church is on the east side of town and we live on the west side of town, there is hardly ever an instance when I give someone a ride because I am hardly ever "going that way." Well, my husband, being the comedian that he is, whispers to me, "Whoever is going to the west side, we're taking them." We both laugh and think that God knows our heart. Then, at the last minute, what do you know...John raises his hand and says he's going to an intersection that's right around the corner from us. I am cracking up, on the inside, as my husband raises his hand to take John home. Since we couldn't "discuss" the matter in church and right after church, John would be with us, we engage in a text message convo. It went as follows:
Hubby: I'm fixin 2 go put the valuables in da trunk
Me: LOL! I'll ride in the back so you can keep an eye on him
Hubby: I agree, I'm gonna go get some plastic seat covers
After service, I see John while my husband pulls the car around. I introduce myself, shake his hand and when my husband arrives, he shakes John's hand also. John gets in the front and we start riding toward the area John said he was going. He was pretty quiet. It was kind of warm outside and in the car as well. We all know that heat makes bad odors smell worse. We'll just say that John wasn't the most pleasant smelling person in the car. We ride and ride, and finally, John directs us to a location that is no where near what he said in church, but still on our side of town. He tells us to turn and says, "You can drop me off right here." My husband gets out to shake his hand as he leaves. We watch John as he walks toward the indicated house, then walks past it, so we pull off in order to avoid embarrassing John because it was obvious he didn't live at that house. We conclude that John was homeless or was embarrassed of where he was staying.
As soon as we turn the corner, my husband is looking around the car frantically.
Me: What are you looking for?!?!
Hubby: Hand sanitizer! Quick!
I pass him the anti-bacterial wipes and scold him for acting like that as I wipe my hands and instructed him to wipe the steering wheel.
We laughed about the situation but it got me thinking, as Christians, we shouldn't judge but it's human nature to do so. We assumed that John was homeless or, a better description, dirty because of our "judgement" of the situation. In turn, we reacted to touching him as if we could possibly contract some disease from shaking John's hand. My husband and I are not the only people who think this way. Some "Christians" wouldn't have even offered John a ride. We ought to be ashamed of ourselves. We are all children of God. We should treat the "vagabond" the same way we treat our co-workers, Jesus did.