"I'm 51 years old and I've got nothing to show for it."
Sometimes one line says it all.
Doug is a friend who a fellow outreach leader, Sean, made friends with initially. Doug is a war veteran, amputee, and alcoholic.
One of my first nights out with New York City Relief, during their Don't Walk By outreach on Thursday nights, I was able to experience the heart of all we do through Sean's selfless actions.
Doug is a guitar player and he uses his guitar as his main source of income to provide for himself out on the streets. One day during the winter months, someone came up and stole Doug's guitar. Because of his disability, Doug was unable to protect himself or his guitar well, and someone took off with all of his ability to provide for himself. The worse part in all of this is that they took more than just his money maker, they stole what little hope he had remaining.
When Sean heard this, he was unable to just say, "I'm sorry, I'll pray for you." He took action.
The next week, Sean took his very own guitar, rallied up a case, and presented it to Doug.
That moment was nearly indescribable.
Appreciation. Gratitude. Amazement.
Ultimately, this moment set forth hope in Doug's life. From hopeless, to hopefull.
And for me, as one of my first experiences of what it is to do what we do? Priceless.