We had a theme at group on Wed night on homelessness/refugees etc. We had some great discussion and ended in praying together for a while. One of the guys, Ro, is all fired up on this topic and has motivated many of us to not just be talking and praying but acting on our convictions, he is really leading us in this. But not, as he shared yesterday, in a trendy passing fad kind of way, he wants to take it slow and let it just happen and unfold as God leads. It’s great to see. He comments on here from time to time – so “HI mate!”
After confessing that many of us wouldn’t know what to do if a homeless person asked for help and some of us praying for God to lead us in areas in which we could be used…I went out for a walk the next morning around the city (as in my city – Joondalup CBD). I see this dark skinned guy (17) riding his bike towards me, I say hi, and he asks in bad english,
“Is this the way to Scarborough?”.
I suggested it was a long ride in the rain! He ended up back at my house with me trying to determine what you do with a guy with not much English from Sudan who has slept on the street for the night and obviously was very hungry and tired.
I made some inquiries (we really do have some places out there that I did not know existed to help with some of these type of issues).
He was talking about a mother in Scarborough, he refered to a mentor…he mentioned Centrelink…I was starting to get a picture that this was not a case of refugee on the street but a runaway.
I started this adventure thinking I would be the saviour. There was some idealistic picture in my head of a neat clean solution. Every time he mentioned staying at my house, watching my DVD’s and playing on my scooter, I got uncomfortable…”would I do this? What of my kids? Would they be safe? Would he pinch my stuff?”
This day had to finish…no, maybe half a day, (I am too busy to give up a whole day)…this morning will have to finish with me settling this guy in a good hostel of sorts, connecting him to the right government agency or some NGO that was equipped to help people in his situation…
But I had to help out at the FORGE ‘Runs on the Board’ event…BUT…Christine needed the car at 1pm for work…BUT I was meant to be with St Gaz for ACOM work…BUT Neale and Susan are due tomorrow…I have a life…I guess this guy deserves a life too…aghhh.
I took him with me to “Runs on the Board”, I bought him food and drink, he got some sleep in the back of someones car.
I then found his Mum in Scarborough.
– My picture – “Scott the hero re-unites mother to son and they live happily ever after”
– True Picture – He would not even come in to his mothers house, I turn out to be one in a long line of people from cops to DCD workers who have returned this runaway home to his lovely neat home with what seemed to be a nice Mum.
I sat with them doing my best at conflict resuloution talking…you know, hero stuff, still with the perfect picture of myself in my mind. Digging up images of Scott the youth worker from days gone by.
My new friend got on his bike, looked at me, looked back at his mother, hesitated…I pleaded with him, “Don’t go, stay here, you have a good home, you don’t want this life on the street you are choosing.” But maybe inside I was really saying, “Don’t go and shatter my dreams for a good story for my blog, for my friends. Don’t ride away with my great testimony of Scott the hero rescuing a Sundanese kid without a home, let me rescue you!”
He rode away.
I stood there, his mother on my left, his image disappearing into the driving rain on my right.
Rain running down my face, tears joining rain down his mothers face. I looked at her, shrugged my shoulders and said, “I’m sorry, I thought I could help”
“Many do” she sighed.
I said to her, as if out of desperation, “I couldn’t help, but I do know my God would want this to be different, I will pray, you can too…maybe things will be different one day”
She thanked me, turned around and walked back to her neat little home.
As I drove my car past my new friend riding in the pouring rain, I simply asked God to make things different for this family.
I didn’t hear God on this situation…silence.
I did hear him in a way asking me about what I was thinking this day would look like when I met my friend in the morning. And how I felt about this outcome.
Messy. That word kept coming to my mind. Messy. Life is messy. When you get mixed up in real peoples lives, what you discover is mess.
Only on TV and the movies do things get all fixed up by the end of the show…I guess my life…our lives look more like LOST than a Hollywood movie…it just keeps going on…and on…and on…there never seems to explanations for things, some things just get repeated over and over and over again. There are enemies (The Others), there is confusion.
I am greatful that I had this encounter, I want to be open to others. But I tell you…it messed up my day…best one I have had for years!
5 thoughts on “Answers To Prayer”
Thanks for sharing this Scott, really appreciate it.
what can you say?…
i sensed there was more to it than a’lost boy’ story.
‘helpless’ feels like the right word – which is very difficult when you want to help.
All sorts of sayings like, “you did your best” and “he’s made a choice and you’ve got to let him go” come to mine.
But they don’t really help do they.
Maybe another word.
Good on you for giving it a go mate – that’s all you can do.
Hopefully you will be one of the links in the chain that brings him back to his family…hopefully.
Thanks for sharing this story worts and all.