Agent W

As long as I am still doing this, why not another personal story?

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

One of the more disturbing images I see from time to time is homeless people camped right up next to a locked church-house door – sometimes literally right against it under the shelter of the overhang of the roof or awning.  More often than not, I actually don’t see it (which also disturbs me).  And I recall a night about three years ago when I gathered up a group of street friends and suggested we go sleep at a church where I was attending, but the street friends protested strongly saying they did not want to wind up in jail!

A few weeks ago, Agent Mamma DJ and Agent V and I met Agent W in her camp spot on a tennis court in a park in central Lubbock.  Agent W is the one that had all the dogs.

I failed to even try to describe Agent W’s rig at…

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Special Agent K

If you are reading here today, I invite you to pause and ask God to bless Special K… wherever she is now…

Thanx

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

I wonder if anyone reading here will remember my post on ALPO (Agent Li’l Psych-O).  It was one of my more popular posts, but it goes back several months now.  In that post I described spinning my wheels in futility as I helped a brother carry his cross.  He struck me as heavily delusional, which in turn made me consider how delusional I was in thinking I might “help.”

I just had another similar encounter this afternoon.  I will not give her name.  Normally I would call her Agent K, but maybe we can consider her a bit more special than that.  Let’s name her Special Agent K, and then affectionately refer to her as Special K.

Yeah.  I like that.

I was driving along 50th near Indiana with Agent Dad yesterday when he noticed a heap of luggage just across 50th from the Market Street.  I was too…

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The Church I Love (part 2)

This post obviously belongs to a series I published several years ago, a couple of which I already reblogged, and so I cannot reblog them again. However, even though this one is less exciting than others in the series, I think it says some general things about the series and about the church and me that are worth looking at again as I wind this blog down. Thanx again for visiting. Thanx to my readers in New Zealand for your interest in all the prophetic ministry posts! Glad to have you here.

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

Last September I offered a post called The Church I Love.  In that post I mentioned that out of all the churches I ever belonged to, only two of them really jazzed me.  I then spent the rest of that post describing, briefly, the first one – New Life Church in Abilene, Texas.  I now want to take some time and tell about the second one, Vandelia Church in Lubbock, Texas.

I don’t usually post praises of the church.  This blog spends a LOT of time and energy calling out the church of America that so blithely closes the homeless out and consigns them to the cold of night.  I regularly pray and work in every imaginative way I can to change that, and I am not at all bashful about criticizing this huge (and yet almost unnoticed) elephant in the room!  AND YET… I love the church.  I…

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The Fat Beggars School of Prophets?

Today’s long-goodbye, reoffering was originally intended to introduce the blog, but this is Amnesia Lane. So… enjoy…

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

What is that all about?

I had the pleasure of answering questions about this street ministry at the Vandelia Church recently, and it makes sense that I write more about us.  This will make a great way to introduce us and open the doors for Jesus.  It aids by answering who we are and how to join us.

Agent X began a career in ministry to addicts at the One-Eighty House in Abilene, TX back in 1999 and a career in prison ministry back in 2000.  In 2002, I moved to Lubbock, TX and joined The Shepherd’s Servants, a prison after-care ministry.  In 2004, I moved out to the streets reaching out to addicts, pushers and prostitutes with a party.  This party changed everything.  The ministry began taking on prophetic dimensions.  And it was about this time that I read a book by Tony Campolo called The Kingdom of God is a…

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Exploring Faith Beneath Your Contempt

I think that back when this blog was going uninhibited, I should have dealt more with this topic. So, here I will just call attention to what has already been said one more time. Thanx for visiting.

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

I don’t usually engage the public with concern for suffering stigma. I do not have any obvious mental or physical ailments or oddities that call for attention (or inattention). And so, as a day in/day out reality, I do not worry about such things.  And I almost could have gone my whole life, I think, without considering it much.

I think one of the first times I dealt with suffering stigma was in my early adult life, and I joined a family I had just met at church for lunch in a public restaurant. When our food came, they all wanted to pray over the food. The prayer was not flamboyant, but it was still a public display of what otherwise had always been a matter of private piety for me. The father of this family prayed over the food for almost 2 minutes as we all dutifully bowed, and…

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Prayer Vigil for Froze to Death Homeless Man

You won’t find monuments and memorials dedicated to the homeless dead generally. No one ever asked me to buy a brick for one (only $100). So before this blog slips off into oblivion, I will ask my readers to remember Juan one more time. Juan and so many like him.

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

I hope to attend the prayer vigil tonight for Juan Castellon, the man who froze to death in Lubbock during our after-Christmas blizzard.  I ask all of Lubbock to come and pray tonight.

I have not posted here on this story largely because I just have too many questions and not enough answers.

How is it that a man living in Lubbock, Texas freezes to death a couple of nights after Christmas???

Was he invited in to the barn at Tent City?  Did he refuse the invitation?  Was he informed about the approaching storm?  Did he suffer mental illness?  Did volunteers know he was out there?

What makes a man feel so unwelcome in a Christian town like Lubbock that he does not find a home or a church to take him in when the weather is deadly?

Couldn’t the church have celebrated this man while he was alive instead of…

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“I Can Only Imagine”

Like a postcard from the edge of heaven… Enjoy!

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

I suppose I should take this opportunity to thank the music group MercyMe for retrieving our Christian imagination after John Lennon stole it from us.  (I love the John Lennon song, btw, but there is no doubt his version of peace is hostile to that of Jesus.  Yet much like Aslan taking Edmund for a short walk and talk, I hope that Lennon’s misguided desires, which were a natural response to his fear and disgust with war, can be rehabilitated with penance.)  Nevertheless, just mentioning these things acknowledges that “the world” (and the principalities and powers therein) are at war for the heart and soul of human imagination.

Back in October, I posted a fairly in-depth introduction to my thoughts on Christian imagination.  Today, I desire a chance to come into yours and explore the battle field of your mind with the maps they are using in heaven’s war room. …

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Angelic Lyft Driver

If you don’t already make it a point to visit Michael Cox’s blog, please start now. This blog never misses.

STREET MINISTRY STORIES

It is a beautiful evening in Seattle. Views of Puget Sound and the Olympic mountains are available to anyone willing to stop and look. The sun is setting, and Seattle’s homeless community begins to make plans for the evening. The Park that we are doing outreach in, holds these two realities of beauty and suffering in epic tension. An ambulance appears and paramedics engage with a group of rowdy beer enthusiasts. A woman tells me that she is a jazz singer and plans to perform soon. She has been homeless for twelve years and demands four sandwiches. She quickly becomes agitated, shakes my hand, and starts looking frantically for her phone. A man who is drunk wants to share a drink with one of our volunteers. Deacon Frank pretends to drink a beer and discovers that his new friend is an Eastern Orthodox Christian. A conversation of lament ensues regrading…

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The 501c3 Body of Christ

Fat Beggars School of Prophets

I have talked about the Business of Homelessness before – see here.  It really disturbs me that the church doesn’t just do its ministry.  Rather, the church (aka the Body of Christ) turns her ministry over to “non-profit” organizations which stand to make vast sums of money off the work they supposedly do for the poor.

This literally just came up in conversation for me a few minutes ago all over again.  I visited with a homeless man selling papers down on the corner when I was pumping gas, and he described the state of yet another major, “non-profit,” para-church ministry in this town.  He told of all the shake up going on, the contracts with other organizations and with the federal government.  And I am seeing careers getting launched while my street friends languish.

Wow!

I do not mean to suggest that a 501c3 is inherently evil, but…

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