The more time I spend here at the Mission, the more I have realized the power of perception: especially within an issue like homelessness. The mind is an extremely powerful tool that can be used positively or negatively to shape our beliefs, and I am convinced that a shift in perception towards homelessness is when we see progress and change. By changing perception in ourselves and throughout our community, we can step up and lovingly help the most vulnerable people in San Diego.
Often times, the perception of those experiencing homelessness is that their story is unique, no one can understand their situation, and that they are unable to change.
The perceptions of many people who don’t understand this issue can be a combination of the following:
- Homelessness is a choice
- Homeless individuals are avoiding work
- The Homeless have an addiction problem and are just chasing their next fix
What both groups have in common is a wrong view of the Truth.
The truth is that everyone can change and there is always hope.
The truth is that when you hear the real stories of those experiencing homelessness, you’ll discover that we are all more alike than different. What if every time you saw a homeless person, your question of “what’s wrong with you” changed to “what happened to you”? When we shift our perception and see others as God sees them—full of potential and worthy of love, hope, and healing, we have an amazing opportunity to extend a helping hand and do the work of the Lord.
The Bible tells us that God has rescued us all. Being the oldest of 4 children, growing up in a broken home and my Father being an alcoholic, God only knows how close I was to experiencing homelessness. The more I spend time with our clients, the more I realize that these individuals are no different from me; they were presented with a set of circumstances in their life in which they were without the skills, resources, or relationships necessary to navigate the many challenges we face as humans.
What is your perception of homelessness? I challenge you to explore this in your heart and spark a new perception towards the homeless in our community. Changing our perception and challenging ourselves to have a new outlook is how we can create change and make a difference TODAY in our community. Will you help us change the perception and end homelessness in San Diego? I pray you will and I thank you for your continued support that allows for change in the lives of our homeless.
“He has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of the Son He loves. In Him, we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Colossians 1:13-14