A few weeks ago in open worship, I was meditating on the pastor’s sermon from Luke 6:30-31 in which Jesus is telling us to give freely to those who ask. I remembered an incident I had long forgotten….
When I was young, the homeless were often hobos—unemployed men travelling from place to place in empty box cars. They would hop off the trains to ask for meals or work in neighborhoods along the tracks. One summer I was visiting my aunt when a hobo approached her for a meal. She gladly found something for him to eat. Then she took me around to the back of the house facing the railroad tracks and showed me a tag on the house. It was the mark that the hobos placed on homes to indicate this was a place they were welcome. And it was clear that my aunt was already prepared to say “yes” to the next hungry man.
In the silence of the worship the memory deeply touched my spirit. I knew that I, too, wanted to live as person who has been tagged—fully recognizable as a person prepared to welcome and give.
Contributed by Jan Wood, North Seattle Friends