It was a cold winter’s day that Sunday. The parking lot to the church was filling up quickly. I noticed as I got out of my car that fellow church members were whispering among themselves as they walked to the church.
As I got closer I saw a man leaned up against the wall outside the church. He was almost laying down as if he was asleep. He had on a long trench coat that was almost in shreds and a hat topped his head, pulled down so you couldn’t see his face.
He wore shoes that looked 30 years old, too small for his feet, with holes all over them, his toes stuck out. I assumed this man was homeless, and asleep, so I walked on by through the doors of the Church.
We all enjoy fellowship for a few minutes, and then someone brought up the man who was laying outside. People snickered and gossiped, but no one bothered to ask him to come in, including me. A few moments later church began. We all waited for the Preacher to take his place, and to give us The Word, when the doors to the church opened. In came the homeless man, walking down the aisle with his head down.
People gasped and whispered and made faces. He made his way down the aisle and up onto the pulpit. When he took off his hat and coat my heart sank. There stood our preacher… he was the “homeless man.”
No one said a word… the room was silent and still.
Then the preacher took his Bible and laid it on the stand.
“Folks, I don’t think I have to tell you what I’m preaching about today.” Then he started singing the words to this song…
“If I can help somebody as I pass along,
If I can cheer somebody with a word or song,
If I can show somebody that he’s traveling wrong,
Then my living shall not be in vain.”