Saturday, October 22, 2005


Thoughts And Questions In The Center Of The City

Jury duty has me in what passes for the heart of Los Angeles -- the Civic Center. This is a huge complex of buildings housing large portions of both the city and the county governments. It is larger than the government centers for some states. It is a roughly half-mile walk from where I park to the courthouse. As one makes the walk the most noticable thing you see are those in need.

They come in every imaginable variety -- laid off in line for unemployment benefits -- injured and seeking redress in civil court -- bums sleeping it off on park benches -- just to name some of what I have seen.

Why are they all at that location? The question would not leave my mind as I made the walks to and fro yesterday. Why here?

The answer, of course, is because that is where the stuff is -- it is where you go to file all the various sorts of claims you might have, lawsuits, benefits and handouts.

And then I became immensely sad. The church should be where people in need go. Why the church is not that place is an extremely complex issue involving everything from Supreme Court decisions to evangelicalism itself. That is in part why Christians need to be involved in all aspects of life in our nation, because so many things need to change.

But yesterday I was just sad. I wished with all my heart that I could go get the church van and take all these people somewhere where they weren't just cogs in an aid machine -- somewhere where they were bearers of God's image and they could experience just a little of God's love.


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