5 things to look for when searching for the homeless by Travis Sharpe

If you are like me, you love to seek people out and be good to them. You want to share Gods love with the down trodden. If that’s you, read on and hopefully you will find these tips helpful.

Here are 5 things to look for:

1. A well worn path

well worn path
This is probably the best thing you could look for. These paths are everywhere when you begin to look for them. They may lead into the woods to a homeless camp, under a bridge, or who knows where.
Often times, when there is a wooded lot in a city setting where there is a lot of businesses close by, you will see these kind of trails. Also, the next time you are walking across a bridge, look to the side as the ground slopes downward and see if there is a trail leading underneath.

2. A fence that has been cut

DSCN1108
Most likely you will find this behind a strip mall, a Walmart, etc. The underneath side of some overpasses are sometimes fenced off as well. Just look for cut areas and a trail nearby.
Many times this will be a very heavily wooded area and you may see a lot of trash near by. Follow the trail that goes beyond the cut in the fence and you may find a whole family of people. Most people would just pass on by and never notice this.

3. RR tracks

RR tracks
The woods along RR tracks are favorite places for some homeless people to live. For one, there is almost always strips of woods that are owned by the RR company on the right of way. Bridges that cross over RR tracks are also popular because the only people passing under there is the RR workers and trains.
Many times the conductors driving the trains will mess with people sleeping under these bridges by sounding the train horns, but for the most part they just leave them be.

4. Woods behind shopping centers

behind store
The woods behind shopping centers and strip malls are often used places to throw up a tent and camp. Especially when there is a ridge that leads to higher ground like in the picture.
These areas are very close to everything but they also provide seclusion. I have found hundreds of people living in areas like this over the years. Just look for trails or shopping carts for possible leads.

5. A bicycle in a strange place

bicycle
Last year I was preaching in Lawrenceville, GA and the church put us in a nice hotel for our stay. One morning I was out walking and I noticed this bicycle.
It just seemed out of place to me. Why would someone chain it up there by these woods? As I looked closer I noticed a bridge and a small trail behind the bike. Sure enough there was a one man homeless camp under the bridge.
The trail was not visible from the parking lot, only the bike.
I hope this helps
I hope these tips help you as you seek out people to share the gospel with. Remember to be careful, don’t enter homeless camps alone. Just because you know why you are there doesn’t mean they know why you  are there.
Treat their belongings and their space with respect, you would want the same.
Introduce yourself when you find someone and love them like Jesus does. You have no idea what their story is and you may be the vessel that God uses to really bless them.

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