The Conversation

Are you new to Fat Beggars School of Prophets blog?  Are you a regular reader who responds to posts with comments?  Are you a irregular reader who stops by sometimes but does not respond?  Are you familiar with Fat Beggars from the streets of Lubbock, Texas (but perhaps new to the blog)?

If you answer “YES” to any of these questions, and even if not, let me formally invite you to participate in the “conversation” here.

It is entirely fitting that this post should be on the “about” page, but it is not.  I think I will just leave the “about” page as it is.  It has served its purpose well enough for a year and a half.  However, some of the Fat Beggars covert operatives and I have been at work planting “invitations” around Lubbock this holiday season, and I have certainly begun a campaign of “reblogging” posts from the web that I find offers interesting discussion points regarding issues surrounding HOMELESSNESS.  All of this is an effort to spark more feedback and exchange of ideas.

As one of the founding Fat Beggars, I bring a particular “angle” or ‘lens” to the discussion that I do not find anywhere else.  I have spent most of the last year and a half promoting that particular angle, but with very little feedback/discussion.  In a word, that angle is: Worship.  But we might also call it a party.

How can worship be the answer to homelessness?

(glad you asked)

Follow the blog and join the “conversation” to find out!

Generating Interest…

The measures taken to draw interest to this discussion are most unusual (and thus we will see if they help or if God moves in spite of them).  Printing up “flyers” to handout to people in various marketplaces, to leave in public restrooms, to attach to trashcans and dumpsters in areas where homeless people are known to gather, to hide in cases of beer at the liquor store (drunks love to talk about religion and politics), and to place as bookmarks in best-selling, Christian books on the rack in bookstores (bookstore customers surely are primed for it, no?) and in libraries (where homeless folk tend to congregate) so that they can be found later by whatever unsuspecting, random people God would attract… these are a few of the methods (some methods are actually covert) of reaching out to people in hopes to spark their interest.

see one of the bookmark flyers here:

fat-beggars-bookmark-flyer-2016

Anyone reading here is welcome to copy this template or develop something similar and pass these around to friends and strangers (or place one in the collection plate at church next Sunday!) and thus join the covert operation(s).  The idea is that sharing with strangers is not as likely to generate more than feigned interest, whereas reading material in a public toilet, if it gets interest, will be more genuine.  Of course we especially want local people from Lubbock to join this “conversation”, but will welcome discussants far and wide.

(see also the cartoon drawings which also draw attention to the conversation and consider printing them off and distributing them where ever you go)

A van full of priests -n- Levites

Missed Opportunity

Tabernacle City

Dumpsters n Steeples

PNNL 1 Homeless Church Closed at Nite 001 (2)

I would like to say “Make yourself at HOME” here, but since this ministry/blog deals with homelessness, that seems a bit too ironic.  And since it is all about a prophetic message, one that typically disturbs the comforted (yet hopefully comforts the disturbed (at least some of the time)), I suggest you don’t actually make yourself too comfortable.  We have a complacent culture to confront, and sadly it is a church culture in particular that needs the confronting.

If you are a church leader, you are particularly welcome here.  If you are a homeless person, you are particularly welcome here.  Your voice is desired, but I will not guarantee that it will find easy agreement.  Some of your ideas will be challenged.  Mine are open to challenge as well.  So the challenge goes all the way around.

If you work with the homeless, your voice is welcome, but beware your ideas almost certainly will be challenged.  If you come with a “secular” or even agnostic voice, you will be met with theological challenge here.  However, I suspect quite strongly that “secular” and agnostic voices have worthwhile challenges for those of us promoting theology!

Fat Beggars is not a trendy street ministry.  It is not a novel idea either.  We do not promote ourselves here and/or raise money.  We do not “think big” in any usual sense.  The invitation to join the conversation is not any usual invitation.  Yes, it is hoped that you are attracted to the discussion, but no, we are not trying to make ourselves any more attractive than Isaiah’s suffering servant, or help you with the newest or latest gimmick, or help you make a name for yourself, or whatever.  In fact, you should notice right off that the pseudonym Agent X is used as a way of downplaying any personal gain from this ministry.  I do not get paid for this.  This ministry does not “have a budget” or any such bureaucratic trappings.  I am not going to make a dime off the backs of suffering people’s sufferings (let this notice be a warning to those from fund-raising charities).  Thus, the prophetic nature of this ministry and this blog is to be the still small voice of God that you mostly DON’T WANT to listen to.  And so… if growth and bigness happen as a result, it will truly be the sheer blessing of God and not some fancy engineering on my part.

If that is not too complicated to follow, AND if you are still reading here, please consider joining the ‘conversation”.  Read previous posts here to get a feel for the angle/lens this ministry promotes.  Read a post, make a comment.  Write a post and submit it for review and publication.  And then talk to God about these things… and perhaps your pastor too.  For homelessness is the church’s business way before anyone else’s.

As we ring in 2017, let’s see if God will bless the homeless of Lubbock with at least a broader conversation that maybe, just maybe, leads to God’s own address of the issues at hand.

Welcome

X

 

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16 comments

  1. T. F. Thompson · December 31

    Simply when you’re talking about them, you are talking about me and our friends.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. T. F. Thompson · January 1

    Daily dose of Suicide
    Many Americans participate in a daily dose of Suicide whereas, from day to day, nothing changes, where lifestyles are self-destructive and where people lack hope. Quick to the point, many of us punish ourselves for many reasons: reasons such as: family, ambition, business, money or other passions. Clearly, as a Christian we should have but one moral duty and that is to God.
    If one should remember Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” then you might remember the lament where one character states “This job is killing me.”
    Many of us are in that predicament.
    My eldest son, an avid extreme hiker, treks with his wife: at times over 200 miles for one journey. He can afford it alright, but what it comes down to is a very expensive trip as a homeless person. One such trip with his wife was in excess of 1,200 miles (about 26 miles a day).
    Near my trashy apartment complex is a good friend of mine who lives out in the woods near the city’s electrical lines. A great guy: he is always upbeat and quick to wish one well. I admire his personality and sense of freedom.
    And so it doesn’t seem I’m dancing around here on the issues, I’ll state my main point and that is: that poverty is mostly a state of mind. For those busy punishing themselves it’s an endless journey of self-torture. The torture is only to remind oneself of reality. The punishment is for past sins and for regret.
    Consequently, man produces his plan for the daily diet of suicide. Naturally, all of this should be avoided. Christ has already paid the ultimate ‘suicide’ and hung on the cross for our sins.
    There is nothing esoteric about being real. We do not have to ‘kill’ ourselves daily in the worldly sense. There is no need for verbal platitudes of either greatness or smallness. All it takes if for to recognize one like me and greet me on a personal basis. That is all it takes. It was the same as Christ.
    “Words are cheap. Rise. Take up your bed and walk,” said the Lord. And all that we need to say is to each other among all me, “I love you.”

    Liked by 2 people

    • Agent X · January 1

      wqw!

      Thanx for that.

      I very much appreciate your participation and perspective. You are one of the few sharing here, and that is highly valued. There are many, especially recently, who are observing. Hopefully more will engage the conversation.

      This is a humble website and a humble ministry. We serve humble people. The proud don’t participate. And by the way, I do not equate humble with homeless (or poverty with homeless for that matter). I know lots of proud homeless folk, too proud to worship with the Fat Beggars… resistant to being called “the least of these” and so forth. Frequently the homeless veterans are the proudest. In fact I know one guy who is not really a vet but claims to be one for all he is worth and gains sympathy by it. He is not humble, but he is not genuine either.

      Enough of pointing that out amid the homeless… Where are the church leaders? There are several in this town who know my real name and this ministry and even this blog. But they do not come here to defend their actions or lack thereof. They do not have to. So… they don’t. This is a humble ministry calling them to humble themselves right where that counts! But it is EASY to ignore us… just like diverting your eyes from the homeless guy on the corner instead of saying “I love you”.

      But you are here. You and a FEW others. The Few, The Humble, The Prophets… (a near polar opposite from the Marines).

      Thanx so much for reading and speaking up.

      X

      Like

      • Agent X · January 1

        That was supposed to say…

        Wow! not “wqw”. Sorry about that. Typing with a baby in my arms….

        X

        Liked by 1 person

  3. T. F. Thompson · January 1

    Thank you for your kind words. At times, I get overwhelmed with people and their needs. This is so very easy to do when you are around people with over whelming needs. Mostly, though it is simply being ‘real’ to our fellow human beings with what we say that we believe. No, I don’t depend on the organized church. I have must use for them, if for no other reason than many do preach the gospel and has also preserved the bible for us. Without them, I wouldn’ t know the bible at all, probably. Yet, that is about the extent I depend on them for it is an organized business, one of which is not all that holy; not that being holy is even possible. I think we simply expect too much out of them. Instead, I believe we should expect all from us. Not that we are able, but that we are willing. I really think that is about all God expects from us…”to walk humbly with our God.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agent X · January 1

      Wow, again! I find these words stunning and convicting:

      “…that is about the extent I depend on them for it is an organized business, one of which is not all that holy…”

      That truck is heavily loaded with tons of theological freight to be unpacked by the church! Coming from one so very near to the streets gives it all the more punch!

      On the other hand, let me be clear (if not for you, then at least for all the others stopping by here), that I differ with this remark that you make:

      “I think we simply expect too much out of them.”

      I actually think quite the opposite really. I think we expect way too little from the body of Christ in our world today. And if that Galilean minister were walking by a marketplace full of needy people today, wouldn’t they line up just to have his mere shadow pass over them? Wouldn’t they crowd him mercilessly and attempt to touch just the hem of his garment? And what would happen to them then?

      Well, we are that body.

      I have high expectations of it. Expectations that a 501c3 will NEVER even dream of!

      Liked by 2 people

  4. T. F. Thompson · January 1

    Perhaps, even, our shadow will be longer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agent X · January 1

      Yeah… now that’s dreaming dreams, seeing visions, and prophesying by the Spirit right there! (Joel 2:28 & Acts 2:17 style)!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. T. F. Thompson · January 1

    For three years now, I’ve asked several churches and the govt for a simple building in the area with several rooms. the idea is to provide a ‘day center’ for vets, homeless and those walking the streets. I want no salary and have other volunteers to assist. I know these people are not welcomed in the church, in fact, would overwhelm the church and would then therefore wanted them where the people were rather than for the people to go to the church. Another concept was for our group to formulate the Christian and then for the organized church to formulate the discipline. Of course, I couldn’t get a dime for it. If I had the money, I’d do it. Alas, my shadow is not very large.

    Like

    • Agent X · January 1

      Not at the moment, it’s not. And even your dream of a building off site with many rooms and inexpensive help was actually aiming low and thinking small, AND YET it was too big for the imagination of the “church” that it spoke to. Hmmm… But your words here are HUGE, and reverberating through the creation God made getting louder and gathering deeper conviction in their wake everyday that the “people of God” are too proud to listen.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. T. F. Thompson · January 1

    It is obvious I am the wrong type of ‘profit’.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. treeofhopeministries · January 5

    Hello Agent X! It’s one person at a time, you know? Small steps, just like learning obedience and trust. I’m still out here, haven’t forgotten you! Healed from broken leg that put me down but not out. There was a church here that let me live IN it for about 5 weeks until I was able to negotiate someone’s home, where I’ve lived for the past 7 months. Still looking to do that revival! Still looking to bring change. It’s about hope. Hope is like sunshine, everyone needs a ray of it and sometimes that hope is a smile, eye contact, and someone who simply cares that day. It’s not those and them, its US!! All of us! Good to see the pot being stirred. Will check in as best as I can. I’m working on relocating. God bless you guys.
    Pastor Sylvia

    Liked by 1 person

  8. treeofhopeministries · January 5

    And @ TF….it is a sad state of affairs that anyone is not WELCOMED in church….Jesus taught us to accept, invite, clothe the poor, the homeless, the mentally ill….church isn’t justfor the middle class. We ALL are sinners, and we ALL need to find the CROSS. Not justifying…I’ve been living in a city who sees the homeless and the solutions are throw more money at the problems, not get down and dirty and in the face of those who are in need and actually TALK to someone. Gah……I’d support your day center in a heart beat if I had the funding, but hey, God moves and I have hopes of making my way to Lubbock sometime for a revival….time may be right, soon.

    God bless.
    Pastor Sylvia

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Anna Waldherr · January 9

    Thank you for your follow. Poverty is an issue always on my heart. Why we as Western Christians have so readily settled into complacency and self-righteousness is beyond me. Wealth, comfort, and acceptance by the mainstream culture seem our goals, if not our gods. May God bless your work.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Roland Ledoux · September 6

    I’ve read through all the comments and I’ve looked at your archive dates and am asking myself, where have I been all your life?!! No, I meant to say it that way, cause I could have used your conversations for some time now; (yes I know the Lord has His timing) but I am looking at the posts and scanning the conversations and it is almost like being transported to a hillside overlooking a lake, sitting around a campfire and asking the Master, “why is it this way?”

    Could it truly be that the Holy Spirit is STILL drawing the fisherman and tax collectors, the wayward and the searching to Him to accomplish something that seems to be repeating itself? I have said for years that we need something to shake up the “pharisaical” religious establishment, at least a little bit so they can see that history DOES repeat itself, maybe not in the same place and certainly not in the same time, but if we ever needed the TRUTH of the Word to be taught and yes demonstrated it is certainly now!! And I thought I was the “black sheep!”

    Wow! Is the Holy Spirit ever awesome!! Praise God Almighty and Praise the Name of Christ Jesus! Where two or three are gathered together He TRULY is in our midst!

    You can bet I will be back. You have my prayers, you certainly have my thanks and I look forward to seeing what else the Lord is going to accomplish!!!

    God bless you all.

    Like

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