Thursday, April 15, 2010

You can't be everything to everyone

I'm having a week where my emotional chain is being yanked.

As I was typing prayer requests yesterday from the rehab ladies, their woeful pleas to "stay clean and sober" seemed to rake my heart.

And a conversation with a nice young man named Javiar at the homeless shelter was much the same. He was "back" after an extended absence. "Welcome back..." I said, adding, "I guess I mean welcome back ... it is a good thing, right?" He proceeded to tell me that after leaving the facility some months ago, he fell back into his addiction. Then he lived on the streets for four months. Then he found his way back for another round of sobriety and recovery.

An email from a "graduated" rehab lady also pulled on me. She is at a transitional facility now about 15 minutes from the church. There are other of my former "students" there as well. "Please, could someone pick us up for church on Sunday mornings?" I had to tell her no, we couldn't. We are at a crossroads at church right now where the reality of our being limited and finite is smacking us in the face. There aren't enough vehicles or warm bodies. And so, for now, the answer is no, and I don't like that answer.

I did meet three new ladies on Tuesday that are part of a new client group at Bonita House. They are from the prison in Huntsville, participating in a special program that allows them to transfer to Bonita House with their newborns. Previously, women like this would have been separated from their babies indefinitely, possibly losing them forever to CPS or foster care.

There are times when the ability to shut down one's emotions sounds very appealing. And yet I know I do not have that luxury nor do I want to turn my back on what God has placed in front of me. It's really an undeserved privilege.

There are many, many people out there with deep wounds who need healing; they need comfort; a cool cup of water.

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