Back in high school, my friend Ching Cruz wrote in my yearbook: "You have a quick mouth. One day it's gonna get you hurt real bad." In the movie they make of my life, ZZ Top's "Under Pressure" will be playing during that scene.
I wear a clerical collar for a variety of reasons, but the first is because one day I went to visit one of my toughest parishioners. Tough as in mostly the life he had led, did lead. The first time i met him he was renting a bathtub in a house so he would have a place to sleep. Once we cranked up the Monday Night Service, Billy started coming. Got to know his story, like how on his birthday two years ago he passed a milestone: he had finally been out of prison for more time than he had been in...
Well, I asked if I could come see him and he gave me an address on Upper Street, north of 7th, a tough street, no doubt.
I did not remember that he had also told me that sometimes pimps and dealers take over his house, kick him out and then sell drugs and women. It's a lot easier than having your own house, apparently. Pimpin' ain't easy.
Well, I go to visit Billy and three dudes come off the porch next door and head right to me. You don't have to be a genius to know that a beat down is coming. Luckily Billy had been exiled to a back room and he stuck his head out and hollered, "Hey! Hey! It's the preacher!" So they left me alone, and even let me come in to the house. NOte: the next time I came back I was able to share the Gospel and pass out some tracts, and a playa in a big brightly colored car took some, saying he was not ready but maybe some guys he knew... how weird.
Anyway, I always figured if I was going to be beat up it was going to be by one of those dudes. Or my neighbors. Come to think of it, that list could get LOOOOONG....
So imagine my surprise when on Twitter, after posting about evangelistic techniques that I think we Americans could learn from our Indian brothers and sisters, a thread was started that began with being told I better not set foot in India!