I would like for you to meet Nathan.  Nathan is a forty year old homeless man that I met in downtown Wichita.  As I walked past Nathan one Saturday as he sat on a bench watching the Veteran’s Day festivities I was curious to know his story.  I was down town with some children who are part of the Walking in The Reign ministry, my daughter and some friends.  We were handing out peanut butter and jelly sandwiches that the girls at the Lady Bugg House had made for the homeless.  Jasmine, a 4th grader, walked up to the man on the bench and asked him if he wanted a sandwich. He said, “yes” so she handed him a sandwich and said “God loves you”.  On our way back past Nathan there was a stirring in my heart to talk to him. I asked him if I could talk to him.  He was reluctant but before he could answer I sat down on the bench next to him.  He told me he didn’t want to talk about how he got to this low place in life so I asked him if he could help me understand more about the homeless situation in Wichita.  He shared how the homeless in our city won’t go hungry.  The homeless go from the Lord’s Dinner to the Union Rescue Mission where they are fed or someone shows up to bring them food out of the truck of their car.  He went on to share with me though about his struggle to find a job.  He told me that he didn’t want to be homeless but that he could not find someone to hire him.  He had been forced onto the streets for the past three weeks.  He shared with me how he wanted to get back to Orlando where his family was but didn’t have the money.  I asked him if he wanted me to help him get a bus ticket.  He seemed shocked that I asked.  He was reluctant to ask me but I could see in his face that he was embarrassed by the fact that he hadn’t had a shower and didn’t have clean clothes for traveling.  I made arrangements for him to shower at the Union Rescue Mission and I went and purchased him some clothes.  Kayla, a young girl we serve through the ministry went with me to get the clothes.  She said, “Michelle, I love doing nice things for people and serving others.  It’s better than doing things I shouldn’t do.”  Not only did we get to show Nathan the love of Jesus but we got to show Kayla the heart of Jesus.  As we spent time with Nathan waiting for the bus to arrive I learned that he was a star football player at his high school. Football was his identity.  He was injured his senior year and was unable to play.  Suddenly people that paid attention to him for his talent turned their backs on him and he got involved in drugs and things he should not have.  My dad and I walked to our car to leave Nathan waiting for his bus and he ran out to the car after us to tell us thank you for taking time to invest in him.  It has to be one of my top powerful moments in life. We gave Nathan our contact information and told him to keep in touch with us but unfortunately we have not heard from him since that day.  I pray that Nathan used this encounter to change his life for the better.  I will keep praying that someday he will get in touch with us.  I praise God for moments to serve Him and for opening my eyes to see beyond the exterior of the man on the bench.