A homeless man told me about himself, as we stood in a crowd. But then, in a split second, he kissed me on the cheek with a peck.
(Now I don’t often get kissed during ministry.)
He whispered, “No one let’s me talk. No one listens to me. And you did.”
Then he walked away, clutching his new Bible, but turned back, “I’m sorry. I used to kiss my grandma growing up. And always on the cheek. It just happened.”
Smiling I asked, “So I remind you of your grandma?”
“Yes. And no. I haven’t kissed her in a long time. Or seen her.”
“So are you sure you’re not making the ‘grandma’ thing up?”
“No, I had a grandma. And I did kiss her. And she listened to me like you do.”
“Good. I can listen. But no more kissing.”
“Yes ma’am. I’m sorry.” He grinned. “But not to worry, that kiss will last me for several years. Thank you for understanding.”
As I pondered the peck on my cheek, it reminded me how lonely our homeless friends must be at times. How lonely I can be at times. For no one is immune. We all need friends.
Then a lady standing next to me leaned over and asked, “Don’t you think you should have slapped him for assuming he could kiss you?”
“No. He needed the kiss more than I did. I just happened to have the ‘right’ cheek at the ‘right’ moment.”
“I guess you could say that. But I’m afraid I would have hit him.”
Grinning I responded, “Then it’s a good thing he didn’t kiss you.”