On the Edge
These last few weeks I have felt like I am toppling off the edge into nothingness. The names that I have been called on social media--"nigger lover," white southern trash," mother fucker, pig, sycophant, "you are not a priest, you are fake," and so on; have shaken me, shaken me to the core, there are nights I can not sleep. My ministry is questioned, with some of the most painful comments. I have had three whom I thought were close friends pull away completely with a letter or email. No talking, no discussion, just a letter or email. What I did--still unclear about--or is it simply misunderstanding--we will never know. I have been having a lot of threats made on me lately.
First of all I am grateful. By all rational I should not be here, and having a great life. By all reason I should have died along time ago on the streets, broke, without a place to live. So I am grateful to have been given this life, grateful for those who have supported me, for those who hate me, for those who do not give a damn. I am grateful. All of you have given me the greatest gift in the world--ministry to street kids. Your love empowers me, your anger, dislike, hatred, makes me look at myself, and your indifference reminds me to put my feet to the ground.
I am grateful for the God who drives me in ministry, who will not let go of me, but keeps driving me in season and out of season, and grateful for my street kids.
But now I need to withdraw from blogging, from face book, and all the other places I post, I first of all need to focus on ministry between now and January, the most difficult time of the year for people on the street. All my attention and my time will be given to them;
Secondly, I need to pull away from constant criticism on social media, and email. I need to look myself in the face and get back to me, without looking at what other people think or say. I hear enough, I am threatened, enough on the streets, than to come home to a computer full of stuff, it upsets me, I feel like I have no friends, it scares me, makes me feel totally alone--so no more, and I will not answer emails or texts with such stuff, primarily because I respond in such hurt that I say things I regret, and because if you can not face me, it is not worth it. You want to criticize me pick up your phone and call me--24 hours a day; I have a seventeen year old friend who a couple months ago was making smart ass remarks, and I lost it with him, so we sat down--the reality is he called me on my stuff, and I called him on his and neither one of us had it right, so in talking we came out of it laughing. We have to talk to one another.
Thirdly, I have been told that I lie about the way I live my life--the reality is I move in different worlds, worlds that have there own way of looking at life; I listen to punk, symphony, opera, rap, hard rock, depending on whom I am with for example, I skate, I surf, I sit in homes, and on the street-- all that means is that I live in those worlds; and at the heart of what I believe is that we love God, and our neighbor. I was once told that my greatest gift is that I can enter into the world of others, be with them, and that is my greatest gift. So you can say what you want--I don't lie about who I am; I am comfortable wherever I am;
Through the years people have told me there is a "fire", a determination within my eyes, that scares them. One person told me "you are a stones throw away from death. We all are, pure and simple, but I see it more directly. This path I have chosen is the cross given to me. I will walk this path until the end. Being a believer does not protect you from life, it strengthens you, it gives you hope, and for me it is heeding the call of giving everything away. I believe Jesus is my friend, and he calls us to love every one without respect to age, nationality, sexual orientation, or any other boundary we put on people to protect ourselves. You can quote all the Scripture, you can give me your opinion, but the reality this is the way I experience God--all loving, not judgmental. I have seen people hurt who come as interns, who come to volunteer, because they are afraid, and that is all on me--for not understanding that the way I work and the people I serve are difficult. I am damn difficult, I am different, I own that-- I am all the names I am called, but I try, I try to love with all my heart.
Social media, and all its variations are good, but the negative is in that it isolates us from the reality of every day living, prevents us from talking. I have two or three friends I talk on Snap Chat with all hours of the day and night,I love it, I do not feel alone, but I also hang out with them and we talk on the phone. They complement each other.
So for now I will not be blogging and I beg you to watch your words that your use on social media, and in your snail mail--they hurt, and they can destroy..
May the Lord, bless you and keep you. May the Lord make his face to shine upon you and give you peace, now and forever more. Amen.
Creator Spiritus! Creator Spirit!
P.O. Box 642656
San Francisco, CA 94164
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