The shelter first greeted me with its smell. A smell of too many people gathered in a place not clean enough. It was repulsive, but this was why I was here. I checked in at the volunteer desk and started a shift that I would become well acquainted with, 4am to 12 noon.
This was my life right after Sandy. My New York connections gave me the opportunity to come in to help out. I spent my time in a shelter for elders with medical needs. The shelter was meant to be temporary. They didn’t have showers or any place to store food or enough sinks. But the days dragged on, and their Far Rockaway homes were still unlivable.
The conditions improved as more help from around the country came. And I kept praying for the lonely souls I would see there everyday and the workers too.
On my second to last day, I was able to share the gospel with a teenage volunteer from New Mexico. He didn’t chose to make a profession then though. I might never see him again but I still pray for Asha.
After I came home from that, I had fallen way behind in a project that may never help mankind: writing a novel for NaNoWriMo. I was aiming for words that could edify and even bring someone to Christ. Not just 50,000 words that took you on a journey with no meaning. I didn’t win but I think I could have if I didn’t spend so much time in the shelter.
But the shelter was what was important at that time.