I spent the day alone yesterday. I did some stuff around the house and then decided to go to the downtown library and then to a movie. They were playing Taxi Driver at our oldest theater.
I knew I needed to get out of the house an change my perspective. I wasn't sure I really wanted company but called a friend anyway. I got my answer she couldn't go. So I headed out. I reached the library at 15 minutes until 1:00 and there was a long line of people at the door.
At first I didn't think much about it but as I parked I saw more groups of people heading in that direction. Then I realized it was our homeless population. It was nearing 90 degrees and they were looking for shelter. Everyone looked clean and presentable. We were all greeted by a five man security force.
I admit that at first I was a little afraid but my fear didn't prevent me from staying. They checked our bags for possible weapons and then let everyone through.
This library was built at the peak of prosperity and no expense was spared. Four storeys high with a huge center stairway and a couple or outdoor fountains. The reading cubes are walnut and there is a room for maps and genealogy. Plush couches and tons of computers.
Some would say it was an extravagant homeless shelter but I thought how great that we all have this beautiful structure to come to and I am sure it means more to them than it does to your average person. Plenty of room for everyone.
I thought life has taken a wrong turn for them. Could be the product of mental illness or drugs and alcohol. We have all seen the results of addiction at some point in our lives. Who knows it could just be a temporary set back.
I don't like to use the problems of others to summon gratitude in my own life. It makes me feel like I need to see someone or something as less than to make me feel I am better off. I don't know their journey just my own and accept that for today I can appreciate the grace I have been given for today.
We are all the same inside wanting the same things to be loved to have a place we feel safe. Quiet moments where we can be free from fear and this hard to come by no matter who you are.