And now, I sit and have coffee amidst homeless folks. Sometimes it's nothing more than sitting in the same room as each other - conversations flow among people who've known each other for long and less with those who've just come to visit for the coffee. And sometimes a coffee that's all that's wanted - or a place to get out of the rain or cold and to rest and get a bit of coffee. But sometimes it's a conversation that's desired, something I still find difficult to manage with some people. But with others, it's much easier - and we've built a kind of rapport. So with some of those who walk in, even if we don't talk, there's a general appreciation for the other.
And sometimes we'll even see each other on walking along the street and then we'll greet each other. That I now do that and find that normal is something I'm glad of; it feels like a number of people have stopped being "those homeless folks" who are nameless and in desperate need of help. Instead, a number of guys have started becoming one of my friendly neighbourhood homeless guys, people I enjoy greeting on the street and look forward to seeing. And even if I'm still not sure when it comes to homelessness how best I can love God and others, it feels like there's been a step forward. And I feel honoured that I now have some homeless guys in my social circle, something I would never have imagined possible before I came here.