Are you Awake?

Imagine, spending a normal day in your life.  You know the regular stuff; waking up (after hitting the snooze button a few times), fumbling around until you’re able to down your much needed cup of java, taking a shower, and rushing off to work.  It’s winter time, so you spend most of the day in and out of the cold; going to work, going to lunch, back to work, and stopping to the store for groceries before heading home for the day.  You spend time with your family, cooking and cleaning, and you manage to get a couple of hours of your favorite television shows in before heading to bed.  You say your prayers, thanking God for getting you and your family safely through the day.  Maybe you ask Him for a few favors for tomorrow, like warmer weather (Please, God no more snow this winter) or help to get through this pointless meeting at work tomorrow without strangling anybody.  Maybe you ask for forgiveness for having road rage that morning and flicking the guy off that pulled out in front of you, as sped by him.  “God you know, my heart.  Please help me to do better”, you prayed.  You get into your nice warm bed, and allow your body to sink into the softness of the mattress.  Your muscles relax as if your body was thanking you for finally allowing it to rest.  You turn off the lights and pull up your nice heavy blanket and snuggle into your pillow.  Finally some peace to rest.

Morning comes a little sooner than you expected, but you’re not awakened by the blaring sounds of your alarm clock.  You’re jarred by the sudden realization of the frigidly cold wind engulfing your entire body.  You roll over to see what time it is, but as you move your mattress doesn’t give into your body’s weight as usual, it has become hard and doesn’t give at all.  Slowly you open your eyes to adjust to the brightness of the sun, and you awaken to a nightmare. 

Your mattress did not give to the weight of your body, because it had become a stack of wooden pallets.  (You know, like the wooden pallets that hold boxes of products to make it easier for stockers to move merchandise from one place to another.)  You didn’t wake up from your body freezing because you loss electricity overnight.  No, that freezing wind is whipping over you, because you and your wooden pallets are outside.  Outside!  Outside with three sheets (that are too thin to be relevant) pulled up over your body.  The pillow you snuggle into as you drifted off to sleep last night, had become a thin sheet you balled up into a make shift pillow.  As you look around to take in your surroundings, all you see in concrete.  You and your wooden pallets are tucked into a corner of the back of a warehouse; you notice your only possessions to be a jar of, less than half eaten, peanut butter and the King James Version of the Holy Bible.  And as inconceivable as this whole ordeal is, you can’t think straight because you have a hunger like you’ve never felt before.  You think about times you’ve joked and said that you were so hungry it felt like your stomach was eating itself.  That feeling was nothing compared to the hunger you felt now. 

Within seconds, your body begins to quiver in shivers from the cold.  Your toes are completely numb from holes being in your socks and shoes and the sheets you used as covering weren’t long enough to cover your feet and your face.  Your face….you can barely stand to touch because it burns from lack of protection from the cold.  Your fingers feel like pins are sticking in the tips of them.  You are compelled to get up and move around from the fear of being frozen still on those wooden pallets.  And though no one is around, you scream out loud, “How did I get here!”  As your echoes fill the air, you realize yesterday was just a dream, a remembrance of a past life.  Reality is, you are homeless……Image

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