Sunday, December 11, 2011

Holiday Reality Check

Thirty-five years ago, I lead a group of teen girls in Campus Life (YFC) Youth Guidance. I was right out of college and had so much to learn myself, but it was a wonderful job. It was heart breaking at times, but I loved the challenge. The girls already led difficult lives at such an early age. We met weekly in groups and participated in adventure trips like backpacking, rappelling, cross country skiing and spelunking (cave exploring). Several of them have kept in touch with me.

This morning I received an email from one of them that moved me to tears. I asked her if I could pass it on anonymously. She put the holiday season in perspective for me.


I am so pleased to see that Breakthrough is continuing to address so many of the needs homeless have.

I found myself homeless for 8 months. I was in a hospital and then a shelter and now a very tiny apartment.

I traveled the country, got spit on, punched, robbed, but I also witnessed small miracles on regular basis.

Shelter life was very sad. I did not sleep the entire time I was there. I was afraid of the other women some not all and I was afraid of the staff. the building was beautiful but what difference does it make if things aren't consistent.

I never dreamed I would be homeless. I imagine that is what everyone says. I never gave up hope.

Perhaps it was the skills I learned as a backpacker, or a spelunker or as a nurse but I have no idea why I am still alive.

I must say racism and cruelty exist but the amount I felt just led me to more prayer and meditation. we should be hoping for each other, peaceful lives working together as one. Imagine that. I guess that is why I have to take medication which I never had to before. I have the dreamers disease without the resources to implement my dreams, and the sad part is some of those dreams seem dashed.

Arloa, have a very Merry Christmas. I plan to also. Its not about clothes or education although those things are important. Its about keeping people safe and out of the rain and harms way.

Best always, with a hug,

One of your Campus Life Alumni

I hope you have a Christmas filled with God's love and peace, and that you never stop dreaming.

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