Some People See it…

San Francisco touched every part of my heart I never thought one trip could address all of the things God has currently been teaching me. From purity to issues with my family, it left no part untouched.

On Thursday, we did meal deliveries and as I went through some of the worse building in San Francisco, a thought came to my mind, this is the life that my dad most likely lives. these buildings housed the unwanted, unloved, and the people that made too many mistakes in life. Time after time I walked up to these rooms and knocked on doors that no one would answer, either because they were terrified, high, or were just too sick and sad to answer the door. It broke my heart. The moments people would answer the door I was excited. We got to talk to few people that day but one of the biggest conversations I have ever had happened with one of my team members.

As we waited my team, Carlos, and I we looking down on the streets and just talked about how crazy it is that so many people live here. I then told him about the thought that had came to my mind about my own dad that I haven’t seen in almost 8 years. It really sucks being here and knowing that my dad lives close to this life style. I remember saying to Carlos, “I can’t help but wonder if there is anyone out there loving on my dad like we are loving on these people.” Carols then said, “Well you know Mo, God sees that you are loving on His people, and you can trust that he’s taking care of things with your dad.”

I will never forget those words. Carlos reminded me of the reassuring truth that My Heavenly Father sees the desires of my heart and He also desires my dad to be with Him too. In that moment my passion to pray for my dad was rekindled.

This morning I woke up early to call my dad. As I waited for him to pick up fear started to come up. I hadn’t talked to him in weeks maybe even months, I forget, but I just knew that he would be everything but happy to hear my voice. The phone call connected. A tired beat down voice muttered, “hello” Dad? It’s Monique I could hear his face light up, Pumpkin! It’s so good to hear from you.

I talked to my dad for about 10 minutes and in those 10 minutes I didn’t feel condemned or like a horrible daughter because I hadn’t talked to him. He was pleasant. Towards the end of our conversation he randomly said to me, ” you know some people see it earlier than others and others take longer. But your mom saw it and got out. It just took me a little longer but I see it now. You pumpkin, you’ve always seen it. You see it and help others see it too”.

I don’t know what it was that he was talking about but I like to guess that it is the meaning of life. The fact that life isn’t mine but it belongs to my Creator. That some people don’t see the meaning but when they do, they get out of the mess that they are in. My mom saw the meaning. She saw that there was more so she got out of the mess she was in and lived the abundant life Jesus prepared for her.

Empty streets?

“Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. (John 12:25 ESV)”

As I walked through the streets of the Tenderloin district on Wednesday, this verse rang in my ear. I’ve come to realize that I am a typical American. I like nice things. I have been taught that I need a college education so that I can have a good job and live comfortably. I’ve been taught that I need nice things. I figure out exactly how to spend my pay check before its even in my account and if I don’t have enough to buy the coolest new electronic or the cutest clothes I will go get my credit card. But I tithe so it’s fine right?

Wednesday night we had chapel with some of the residents that live in the TL. during worship God compelled me to remember His goodness. I started to write down reasons why He is good. As I wrote down different things about His character I realized that the only reason why I live this life is because God gave it to me. This life belongs to Him and because it belongs to Him I am okay with not being comfortable as long as I am not empty.

Since being home I have realized how none of those things bring joy. They may bring temporary happiness but the clothes I wear, the phone I have, even the places I am able to go because of my job, don’t bring lasting joy. I spent an entire week reaching out to broken people but those empty streets have shown me how empty I am. How broken I am.

In a lot of ways I have felt hopeless since being home. I have felt like I need to do so much more. But I have also had moments that I have felt so alive. These moments have come when I’ve set aside time to seek my Daddy. He is the only thing that satisfies me eternally. He’s the only one that makes me whole. I’m not empty because He is in me.

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