Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Boojie Beggar

The other day I'm on the train and a woman boards asking for money. She passionately proclaims that she's not an addict of any kind and simply needs money for food. I was tempted to give her what was literally the last dollar in my pocket-- until I observed how she responded to her first contribution. A woman with a small child proceeded to give her what may have been every coin in her purse. The homeless woman then methodically picked out every penny in her possession, placed it an empty seat, and headed to the next subway car.

I guess beggars can be choosy.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Can't Question my Fanhood

As an avid Knicks fan this juncture of the NBA season is the most exciting-- and nerve wracking. The off season gives each Franchise-- especially less successful teams-- the opportunity to shake up their rosters in a major way. The draft holds the promise of selecting prospective NBA stars, while in a week the free agency period allows you to court established talent. Fun times indeed! I'll go as far as to say this time of the year is the most thrilling for me. The Knicks haven't produced a winning product in years, so once that all too familiar scent of failure is in the air once the ball hits the hardwood, I yearn for  the aroma of hope brewing in the off season. My mouth waters in anticipation of another painful year coming to a merciful end, signifying the beginning of the other season. But while the off season provides a thrill, it also brings with it anxiety. Again, I'm a die- hard Knicks fan, and with the stress I endure during this time you'd think I was on the MSG payroll and entrusted with these crucial decisions personally! Sheesh! Well, tonight kicks off what should be a busy summer for my Knickerbockers. We have the opportunity to trade into the first round (we lost our first round pick in a previous trade) and to pursue a bevy of exceptional free agents. We also have significant cap room for the first time a long, and a shrewd veteran President in Donnie Walsh overseeing all decisions. While resources and a competent executive help, it hardly quells the butterflies wreaking havoc in my gut. There are a variety of ways to use this money including: buying draft picks, signing Free Agents (be it straight- up, or sign/trade from FA's previous team), and trading for players. With optimism surrounding this upcoming 2011 regular season, here's to hoping President Walsh cooks up something good between now and then!

Sunday, June 20, 2010


Heading into my first missions trip this evening I was lugging around heavy anxiety and doubt, in addition to my overnight bag. While this trip is only for a weekend, my fear resided in my lack of experience in doing the Lords work in this manner. Missions work!? I haven't even done any formal evangelism locally! I figured, surely God drafted the wrong solider for this fight! I'm not the scripture quoting type and therefore felt ill-equipped heading into this. I wondered if I were truly ready for this task. What if I say something (biblically sound) but cant locate the text to support it? Or... what if someone asks me a question that I can't answer! With the apprehension I was preparing to board this Lynn, Massachusetts bound bus with I had packed anything but light!

Those close to me gave me a abundance of helpful advice and assurances, but one in particular stood out to me.  Someone told me that while I may not be a walking audio bible, I did possess an invaluable tool-- a testimony. These words immediately evoked thoughts of recent scripture I had read. John 9:1-41 tells of a man who was born blind but was healed once crossing paths with the Lord, Jesus Christ. His neighbors, and later the Pharisees, questioned if he was indeed blind once, and how he was healed. They went as far as to accost the man’s parents, hoping to dispel the notion that this individual was indeed even blind at one point. The Pharisee's had an agenda, of course, as they refused to attribute anything holy to Jesus. They continued to question the man until the seemingly exasperated gentleman retorts, "I don’t know whether [Jesus] is a sinner,” the man replied. “But I know this: I was blind, and now I can see" (John 9:25)! As I heeded these words of comfort offered by my loved one, that biblical account of the blind man resonated within me in a profound way. The formerly blind man who received this miracle at the hands of Christ didn't have all the details around the healing, or even the healer. All he knew was that he had been healed, and was now a tangible, walking product of the power of Christ. I get it!

This evening I head into this commitment with a new-found focus and sense of comfort. And it's not because I jotted a couple scriptures on the palm of my hand. Or because I riddled my bible with a variety of make-shift bookmarks. I head into this weekend emboldened because while I may not have all the answers, I know the one who does-- as the cliche goes. And because I ran into this person, my Savior, though I was once blind I now see due to the transformation I've undergone since that fateful day we met. And I’m equipped, and ready to tell you all about it.

*Originally written June 18th, 2010, but in my haste to depart for this trip I had no time to post.*