We’ve been living in the DTES for a month now, and just this week it hit me hard: this isn’t the way it’s supposed to be. This is broken. By this, I mean this world, this life, these people – including myself. This week I heard of relationships breaking apart, of men getting attacked and beaten to a pulp two blocks from my house (in broad daylight), of overdoses and pain and sorrow.
This isn’t how it’s supposed to be.
The people here are broken, and beautiful – and this is why I love it here. I love it here because daily I am reminded that this isn’t how it’s supposed to be. It’s much harder to remember that when sitting in a comfortable suburban church. It’s much harder to see the stark reality of our need for a saviour when you never have to worry about where your next hug is coming from.
Here, life is lived on the surface. Here, reality can be seen for what it truly is – incredible people, loved by God, trapped in broken skin and bones. This is just one of the things that living among the poor can teach us, one of the things that we desperately need to remember. While it is all well and good that reality can be seen here, we need to create ways of breaking out from our suburban half-real Christianity. We need to be open, real, and ready to bear the burdens of one another.
On a personal note, I realize that I haven’t been blogging. It’s been a transition time. I’m now working full time at Grace Mansion, a apartment building for those that have gone through drug treatment and are on their way to a healthy life. It’s a very boring job, as I work midnight-8am, but it has given me a lot of time to think – and I hope to start writing more soon. For any Abbotsfordians reading this, I will be at Emmanuel Mennonite Church on September 23 and speaking a little bit about our journey so far. I would love to see you there.