Jeff is a guy in his early 20's who lives in the neighborhood and is constantly having "accidents." During the past year I have lived in this neighborhood, Jeff has had somewhere around 6 accidents. All have required stitches. At first, it was a cut on his hand (that bled all over my fav flip-flops!) then one to the head, then a night of yelling outside my bedroom at 3 am saying his friend was bleeding to death outside my front door. That was a little (OK a lot) overstatement. As I ran from the back of my apartment to the front door, flashes of blood and guts and bullets ran through my head. When I got the porch light on I saw that Jeff's friend had fallen and scrapped her chin. After walking over for a closer look, the smell of alcohol almost knocked me down.
Jeff got a lecture.
By a white girl.
It went something like this:
1. Your friend is NOT bleeding to death.
2. I was sleeping.
3. Where were you going at 3am?
4. How much have you all had to drink?
5. I WAS SLEEPING!
The drunk duo burst out laughing.
I handed them neosporin and band-aids and said to come back at 8 and I would look at it again.
Last week Jeff came back into the office (surprise surprise).
He had 5 sets of new sutures. 1 on his hand, 1 on his bicep and 3 on his back. Pretty big I might add.
He said he didn't want to bother me again at 3am so he went to the hospital instead of waking me up outside my window but wanted to know if i would change his dressings for him. I never really dug for info on past injuries Jeff had but this one was pretty bad.
When I asked him what happened he said, "I got cut."
I said, "Really Jeff? That's all you're going to tell me?"
He went on to say he got in a fight, at night, when he was drunk and the guy stabbed him several times with a broken glass bottle.
I didn't say anything and kept cleaning his wounds. Just thinking. Thinking how the possibility that one day someone was going to come by and tell me Jeff was dead was pretty certain.
He asked me why I was being so quiet...someone is obviously used to my lectures. The lectures which obviously aren't working.
I looked at Jeff with his Mohawk cut hair, tough guy facial expression and multiple stitches. How many times over the past year has God literally put this guy on my doorstep? I have never mentioned God to him. I was too busy trying to control the bleeding, tending to his physical wounds.
I ended up telling Jeff I was just thinking. But there was a lecture going on in my head. But this time I was on the receiving end. God was giving it.
Jeff came back everyday for a week or so to get his bandages changed. I tried to talk to him about other things. His kids (he has 2 beautiful kids), music, neighbors, and then finally told him I was praying for him.
And to my surprise...he said thanks.
Then I went a bit further and told him my fear that one day I was going to hear that he was dead. He said that sometimes that scares him too.
Sometimes medical professionals forget that physical wounds are not the only wounds that need healing.
Let's surround Jeff in prayers.