Mr. George lived in a single-room unit in a government-subsidized
high-rise apartment building across from the church I served in Little
Rock, Arkansas. When he attended worship services, he came in his
wheelchair with a volunteer who assisted him in crossing the street and
rolled him up the ramp into the side entrance.
My visits with him
in his home were not always pleasant. The odors of dirty laundry, stale
tobacco and stagnant air greeted me whenever I entered his apartment. He
usually had a smile on his face, but it seemed forced, more like a
grimace, and he spoke in a gruff voice, slurring his words. A ruddy
complexion made him appear angry. So when he called, complaining that he
was about to be evicted because the bank had stolen all of his money, I
went to see him—but I wasn't looking forward to the meeting.
Roger Kruger is the author of In Jars of Clay: Reflections on the Art of Pastoring (Mill City Press). He is working on a book titled Is Church Necessary? Believing and Belonging in an Age of Spiritual Individualism.