Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Heart

There's something symbolic about the heart.

When I first met Gerson and he mentioned that he wanted to study medicine, I clearly remember him telling me that he wanted to specialize in a field that involved the heart, because to him it was a symbol of life, not just physical, but eternal life.

This past week, I was running around town, meeting with different centers, churches, and organizations for a project I'm working on at my job. On Friday, I met with a man named Pastor Clayton. He has a church on the East side of San Antonio.

Well Pastor Clayton is a man that knows the East side like no other. He was born and raised there. Growing up he became part of a gang and basically just got into a lot of trouble. He told me that God called him to talk to people that could relate to him. He had been in prison, crimes, fights, gangs, drugs, and he wanted to share about God's love exactly where he was raised.

Pastor Clayton doesn't like to preach to the gang members or drug addicts. He simply likes to reflect love, reflect Christ. He thinks it's pointless telling people that they're wrong, or that they're going to hell. Or telling them what to do and what not to do.

Pastor Clayton mentioned that he had visit a gang member the day before. He said the gang member who doesn't live in the best conditions, nor has much, had a sandwich and insisted on sharing half of his sandwich with him. Although this guy is in a gang and tattooed, he has a heart just like all of us. And although he runs the streets acting tough, probably hurting others, his heart has a piece of kindness. Pastor Clayton is convinced that if he continues visiting and showing love to him, showing God's love, he will be captured. He believes this because he has so many testimonies to share of people that lived in that same situation and were captured by God's love. He then said that it's important to learn to see a person's heart, see the kindness, the sorrow, anger in them, because when we do we, we get the opportunity to build a relationship with them.

The meeting that I had with Pastor Clayton taught me two things. First, that I need to constantly show love to everyone and remain transparent so people can see God's light in me. Second, that I need to build relationships with people that need of God. Get out of the "church walls" and build relationships with others. I honestly haven't even attended church in a while, but even so, I truly believe that through me others can meet God the way I have and eventually have Him touch their hearts the way He touched mine.

I also couldn't help but think about the opportunity I have not just at my workplace but in my life to impact a heart. Just like when Gerson told me he wanted to work in a field that involved the heart, I too, want to work with families, people and their hearts. I want to speak life to hearts. I want to speak life, just like many have spoken life to me that inspired me to change and excel.

Meeting Pastor Clayton was such a pleasure. He touched my heart by learning about the work he is doing in the community. I really hope this is the first of many meetings with him.

As I walked out, I took a picture with my phone of Pastor Clayton's church. It's in the heart of the East side of San Antonio.