Who is Mr. Invisible? I don’t know, but I see him everyday after I exit the L train. As soon as I turn the corner he’s there sitting on the first seat of the five seat wooden bench.
I would describe him as a 40-50 year old African American man. He wears the same clothes everyday. He usually has on very filthy socks and shoes and at times he’s barefoot. His feet look as though he hasn’t washed or moisturized them for several years. They look to be very hard, ashy, and crusty. His hair is black and short and sort of nappy Afro like. I can tell it hasn’t been combed for a very long time. His facial skin seems to be intact, or least it looks that way to me. I really haven’t got close enough to be sure.
I’m unsure why, but I take notice of this man, and I wonder if anyone pays attention to him like I do. I’m sure he’s not starving because sometimes I catch him having his dinner and it looks to me to be a pretty sizable one. Like the hot food you would buy from a bodega. So he doesn’t take very good care of his personal hygiene but he eats good, go figure! I never hear him talking to himself or anything like that and just the other day I actually said hello and he made a grunting sound at me. Believe it or not it sounded harmless and innocent, and at that very moment I felt compassion for him.
As I ride the trains each day there is always a homeless man or women who has a story to tell. They tell how they lost everything from their family, their house, car, everything, and the end result is a question of whether or not someone can help them with whatever possible, dollars, change, anything. Some will even entertain you with song, or dance, or beating a drum for compensation. In which I wholeheartedly respect, it’s strange I never see Mr. Invisible ask for any money.
I guess he’s self sufficient to a certain extent. I wonder what’s a day like for him, like where does he go when on occasion I get off the train and he’s not there? What’s he doing when he’s not home down in the Halsey Street train station. As I was writing this I actually ran outside and down into the train station and he wasn’t there. See what I mean? Where is he? What does he do to occupy his time in his day, and no I’m not stalking the homeless guy lol but I’m just curious.
But maybe this is not his home at all, maybe it’s his favorite hang out spot or something I don’t know. But where he sits there is a sign that reads waiting area. How significant is that? Maybe he’s waiting on life to come by and pick him back up or some person, or family member, someone to remember he’s still here, he’s still alive. Someone to rescue him from his dire straits.
So many thoughts ponder in my head about this mans life. Mr. Invisible who has a past, and while still present and while nothing is impossible with God has potential inspite of it all to have a great future.
“Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for all things are possible with God.”
Mark 10:27 ASVhttp://bible.com/12/mrk.10.27.asv
He’s oblivious to everyone. But I wonder what happened? Like the others I mentioned earlier, he as well has a story. What’s his story? I wonder if he has a family and are they looking for him. Did he have a job or a career that went south? Is he educated and now lost all literacy? What was it I wonder? What was the breaking point for him, or did his bad choices cause him to end up where he is? I dare not ask him, I dare not impose!
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Who knows, maybe it’s not my business. But it should be, it should be everyone’s business to care for humanity. Those that are down-trodden and have lost all sense of hope and direction. Are we not to be held accountable for each other? Shouldn’t we have an obligation or responsibility to be our brother or sister’s keeper even if it’s not biological? I would think so.
Think about it this mans life is not far from our own reality. I mean is life so predictable that we can be certain that where he is in life, we could or would never be? I think not. Isn’t it possible to have gained everything in life that you ever wanted to lose it all in an instance? Wouldn’t that put you in the same position of Mr. Invisible with the possibly to even have lost your mind because of it all?
Imagine waking up tomorrow to a world where nobody knows you. Oh yes you’re there but like Mr. Invisible your invisible. All that you worked for, strived for, and accomplished went unnoticed. What would be your end result? Everyone is so busy and things are moving so fast we hardly have time to think about what’s important like the people who are still here but vanishing before our very eyes.
Life happens and it can happen to any one of us at any given time. Be thankful and remain humble. James 4:6 says that God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. So I say if we can do nothing else but to greet the unfortunate with a hello, lend a smile, or say a prayer, we have at least decided that they are not forgotten and we still care.
To Mr. Invisible as we walk by and look at you each day and you glacé back at us, know this, we are much closer to you then you think.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Galatians 5:22-23
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