The Belief of My Youth



I was despairing over more loss…all the rest of my stuff in the storage locker: my bed, furniture, my Heath dishes, all my books and my clothes (when I have none right now.)

I had gone to the storage unit the same day I met the two guts at the bus stop. In fact that was where I was going. When I got there my access codes yielded “Access Suspended.” I am $256 late and I don’t have it.

Andy (the preacher) had said I could choose to disbelieve and expect God not to show up. He said we often do that now in later life unlike when we were younger. I thought at the time how true that was – how in my youth I was constantly challenged, but how God always showed up. I remembered once Christmas when the kids (just Sean and Thomas) wanted to go to Disneyland and no way we had the money for that. I prayed with the boys for that and a week or so before Xmas vacation someone sent an anonymous $500 cashier’s check. I had not said a thing.

We went to Disneyland.

That is a silly example and all too typical for an American. Many toher times it was rent, or no car and someone would give us one – seriously. Once someone just gave my wife and  I a nearly perfect Volvo station wagon. Then she went off to seminary and now no longer believes in God. Go figure.

But I am not much better. I was pretty certain that the same God who holds the Universe together at every moment and Who raised Jesus from the dead was utterly unable AND unwilling to cough up $256 to save all of my earthly belongings.

That was before the sermon. During it I reconsidered.

One thing about being long in the faith is that you can “do the math” very quickly. I chose instead to go with Andy’s suggestion and CHOOSE to believe and expect.

At the storage place I suppose I could have found a way to sneak into my units but I didn’t. I decided to play the whole thing out. And I didn’t turn to the church that had already helped me so much financially. I knew they had done enough. No…I wanted God to show up.

Like in my youth.

That evening there was a guy passing out socks. Seriously…that is what he does every Sunday. It is his ministry. He is into supplies and his way of giving back given his sobriety and spirituality (which began seven years ago) is to come and give away socks and some other supplies.

We started talking and one thing led to another and I just got off the phone with him (it is Wednesday now) and we are meeting Friday and he is going to pay off the storage unit arrears and sell a bunch of my stuff at the Flea Market across the street. This is already what HE DOES as part of his livelihood. After he pays himself back for re-opening my storage…he will split the spoils from other stuff of mine 50/50, which means I will make money of stuff I need to unload. I also will be able to “lose one of the two units I have now that he will sell some and sin ce my ex-girlfriend removed her stuff – I only need one unit and Will will help me consolidate into one unit cutting my bill in half for future months.

What it means is I get to probably keep my stuff. And the stuff I lose via sales? I was going to lose IT ALL ANYWAY,

Now I get my clothes and access to storage…it’s an amazing grace and from a complete stranger on the same day as the sermon.

I did not even have to “wait.”

Now since then many other amazing stories have happened. They continue. I cannot write fast enough, and I write pretty darned fast. The Great Reynaldo and I continue to grow in friendship and fellowship – and that is a miracle to both of us – if you can imagine ME teamed with a mountain of a black man from Chicago who is a total extrovert, brilliant and a social activist. The two of us teamed together are formidable (when we are not trading whole sections of “STRIPES” and laughing hysterically). We’re like a street gang of two at a Ph.D level.

We went and terrorized Capitola today where TGR accused not once, but twice of pulling a “Larry David” on people in a cafe. And the first one was really funny because he did it out LOUD (sending me over the edge.). 

(TGR is really good for me because people are always trying to tone me down and I am so sensitive it really hurts and I take it far too seriously. TGR is from Chicago – HE DOESN’T CARE! He will laugh as loud as he wants and if you don’t like it guess what – it is YOUR problem. I love that.) Californians are sooooooooo repressed.

The reality is we both love God and people. It is a LOT of fun…a lot more fun than anyone should ever have in a shelter. .


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Dianna Lubeck
    Aug 28, 2014 @ 02:29:39

    I read and love your posts. You are, simply…a picture of humanity and God’s grace.


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