Creative Work

Traveling Together

Amy Treece

The man on the corner looks tired and worn.
I walk past him every day on my way to school,
       and again as I make my way home.
He is a friendly face; I know of him,
       for he is always here.
He is a constant in a changing world,
       a part of this day, my day.
But I have no idea where he is from
       or how he ended up here,
on my block, on my path, for me to see.
“Can you spare some change?” he asks;
       “Or buy me some food?”
I ponder my response.

In Matthew 25:31–40, Jesus says that when we serve the poor, we serve him.

How will I greet him today?
What can I say that will mean something
       but not too much.
He asks for food, money;
but he also seems to want the connection,
       the smile, the acknowledgement that yes, he is there.
He has been ignored so many times
       that he has begun to wonder. . . .
People look past him as if he were not there,
       as if he were invisible.
He looks to me as if to check for himself.
I can see him. He sees me.
       We exist together.
This is our path.
Wherever it leads, at least for a moment,
       we have traveled together.


5-SECOND PRAYER: God give us sight to see our neighbors, whether they have homes or not. Help us to love them and to serve them. Amen.

—from devozine (November/December 2002). Copyright © 2002 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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