When Jesus spoke of helping the homeless, he didn’t talk about giving them a dollar, but inviting them into our home. Yes, giving a smile to a person begging, or some food is great, but when a person has no housing, what they really need is some security overnight so they can get some sleep.
My family of five live in a six bedroom house. We specifically purchased this house so that we could take our extra rooms and welcome the homeless to live with us. We have had as many as eleven folks live with us. I am not suggesting that everyone who reads this take so many people in, but many of us have extra room where we could take someone in. Because what the homeless really need is an opportunity
If you take someone in, I recommend that you get to know the person beforehand. Find out if they will be compatible with you or those who live with you. Also ask others who have lived with her or him about how safe they are. Make a contract with the person, which will determine their responsibilities (e.g., chores, no smoking in the house) and yours (e.g., 30 days notice)
Another option, especially if someone is living in their car is to have your church host them for a period of time in your parking lot. Again, you should have a contract with them, and you should give them a trial period before you invite them to stay long term. Again, Anawim has done this with many different homeless folks successfully.
If you would like to support Anawim in our efforts to provide security for the needy, please donate here. If you’d like to help volunteer to provide security for those staying with us, please contact Pastor Steve at 503-888-4453