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Three Guys and Jesus

Almost nobody in Portland has gear for seventeen degrees because it never gets that cold here…except yesterday…and this week…maybe next.


So I was out with a couple of huge, IKEA bags jammed full of stuff. Socks, tarps, two sleeping bags, hoodies, hats, gloves and, best of all, hand warmers. At one point I ran across three guys huddled together in a small alcove, trying to escape the wind.

“You guys cold?” The cosmic absurdity of that query hit me just as the words left my mouth. Too late to retrieve them, though.¬† Then, “Want some handwarmers?”

Guy #1 took the four pair I handed him and, as I fumbled for more, gave one each to his buddies. Now he had two and the others had one each. #1 fiddled with the extra handwarmer, twirling it in his fingers uncomfortably. An imbalance. What to do? I gave four each to his friends and without a word they each handed one back  to their generous friend. Balance achieved!

I think there is a tincture of Jesus in most, maybe all, people. It shows itself in the form of love, sharing, taking in then giving away, even to our own hurt. Would these guys name the name of Jesus as their Lord and Savior, World Without End, Amen? I don’t know, I didn’t ask, but I observed His life coursing through their veins in that moment.

Three friends of mine

It happens often in downtown Portland, Oregon among the “least” of these.


  1. Kristen wrote:

    Fuck, Ken. Right to the core.

    Wednesday, December 9, 2009 at 10:17 am | Permalink
  2. Denie wrote:

    Thank you for saying what I wish people around me could see!

    Wednesday, December 9, 2009 at 12:00 pm | Permalink
  3. Ken wrote:

    The god of this world hath blinded their eyes… (KJV + memory). Don’t remember the context so I can freely pontificate.

    If Satan were actually among us, what better way to make us impotent than to keep us blind to his heart and to his people who don’t yell much in Jesus’ name?

    Just thinking out loud.

    Wednesday, December 9, 2009 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

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