bonar crump

bonar crump
husband - father - reader - runner - picker - grinner - lover - sinner

Monday, August 6, 2012


When someone turns their back on you, it hurts. When you can tell that someone is talking about you to someone else in the room with the whispered warning of, “don’t look now, but guess who just showed up,” it pushes down on you like a ridiculously heavy backpack. When your very best efforts to please someone result in a dismissive lack of affirmation, it creates distance, anger, and resentment.

When a person is ugly or dirty or smelly or boisterous or crass or impatient or flamboyant we all treat them differently. We turn our back to them without realizing we’ve hurt them. We warn others in our group to be aware of “that person over there” without intent of malice. We dismissively nod thanks to them with a fake smile and hurried eyes if they engage us while unknowingly reaffirming a multitude of rejection stereotypes.

The “Homeless”—I don’t even know what that means anymore. I get that we’re talking about people that don’t have a home. We’re talking about individuals and families that lack the resources necessary to procure sustainable shelter. What I mean when I say that I don’t know what “homeless” means is that I need a definitive explanation of the word HOME.

I’m too philosophically driven to only accept HOME as the place where a person, family, or household lives. That’s the easy definition, but what about HOME as a safe place? A place where a person can find refuge and safety or live in security? What about a HOME office or HOME field advantage? What about a criticism that hits HOME or driving the nail HOME? What if I’m HOME free or happy to be HOME for the holidays?

Certainly, there are connotations of where someone dwells within each of these depictions, but it has to be about more than where someone physically resides. It has to do with one’s origins—less about geography and more about a sense of belonging.

HOME is more about where the heart lives and what the heart connects to than it is about where we keep our stuff.

If that’s true then I think more of us are “homeless” than we realize. I’ve known wealthy CEO’s and pillars of the community that were as homeless as any vagrant living under a bridge. I know families living in 6,000 sq. ft. houses just as homeless as the dirtiest bag lady on the street. Politicians, Clergy, Writers, Doctors, Educators, Sculptors, Executives, and Judges—all as homeless as anyone could ever be because their hearts don’t have a HOME.

When a heart doesn’t have a HOME (a place of safety and nurturing) it develops a sense of entitlement, self-importance, paranoia, and ultimately the mechanism of rejecting others before being rejected.

A heart needs a place to rest comfortably from time to time. A heart needs food and shelter. A heart needs to be fed compassion and trust and loyalty and love and respect in order to remain healthy. A healthy heart needs time to heal and time to rest and time to experience peace.

But that’s not all a heart needs!

A heart also needs exercise through acts of service to others. It needs work and responsibility and needs to be stretched. A healthy heart needs to perform. It needs cycles of rest and work, peace and stress, acceptance both received and given. A healthy heart HAS TO be used or else it decays. And once it has decayed for long enough it becomes a hardened lump of atrophied muscle capable of one thing only—self-preservation.

You’ve seen the street homeless with their dirty clothes, constant walking, bags upon bags of “stuff”, and distant stares shuffling down the street. They are in self-preservation mode. Their defenses acutely devised to keep you and everyone else away. Their trust has died. Their fears have overtaken them. They’ve had backs turned on them for so long that they wonder if they themselves actually exist. Their flamboyant behavior is a warning sign to stay away.

From a broken, lonely, depraved place where a healthy heart struggles to exist we all defend against the sadness, loneliness, and hopelessness we’ve suffered in our lives.

We are all homeless.
We are all dysfunctional.
We are all broken.
We are all HOMELESS.

Beware false promises of a HOME for your heart. Physical beauty, possessions, power, influence, control, and stature may be how we errantly label one’s identity, but none of these things provide a HOME for the heart. And once you find that true home for your heart, DO NOT abandon it for promises of something bigger and better. The most honorable, healing, peaceful, loving places a heart can call home are also, more often than not, the simplest places, things, and people in our lives.

Find a home for your heart and then go about the business of finding homes for other people’s hearts. Because if you are interested in fighting poverty, abuse, hunger, and hatred you need to understand that these are malignant tumors on society brought about by a culture of homeless hearts searching for significance through the exploitation of others.

The worst part about a heart without a home is NOT that it dies. The worst part is that it WANTS TO DIE but cannot. The worst part is that when it cannot die it feeds on others. The homeless heart, left unchecked, can destroy and consume and devastate anything in its path. It’s like a tornado—a resulting force of nature without any positive reason for existence. And often, just like that tornado, the chronically homeless heart is arbitrary about who or what it affects.

Here’s the magnificent part—when you are about the business of feeding compassion and trust and loyalty and love and respect to the hearts of others, your own heart is satisfied. It’s circular. It’s rhythmic. It’s organic. It’s what we call communal living and there is no individual achievement that can take its place.

A healthy home for a heart is NOT an efficiency apartment. It is a high school gymnasium filled with cots. Don’t buy into the idea of self-sufficiency. If you do, you might find a place for your stuff, but you will not find a place for your heart.

Think big and give big.