graffiti artwork of toilets by matlakas

Meet the Need First–Cleaning a Toilet

They didn’t know what to do. They were in a neighborhood new to them, and they wanted to reach out to their neighbors. Many of these neighbors were from different countries, and some of them were having tough financial challenges. The group asked their leader what they could do for

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De la Vega street art that reads Be Mindful Even If Your Mind Is Full


Think how our own consciousness has changed. Over thousands of years, we processed our world in a certain way. A hundred and fifty years ago, telephones, radio, and movies didn’t exist. A hundred years ago, television had not even been invented. Forty years ago, we didn’t have the internet. Thirty

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Graffiti art of lion with lamb

God Keeps Losing

God lets Abraham win the argument over how many righteous people need to be in the city in order to save it. God lets Jacob prevail in the wrestling match.  God lets Moses win the discussion over whether to destroy the people in the wilderness. Our Lord takes the position

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Graffiti artist iNo praying hands artwork

Feeling The Tap On The Shoulder

Jon Dobbs taught my son in high school in the Bronx many years ago. Through a strange set of circumstances, he made connections with Graffiti. He has been serving here at Graffiti in assisting in our children’s program. Here is part of his testimony: My name is Jon Dobbs; I

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Graffiit showing shepherd covering sheep with umbrella

Meet the Need First…

Not Meet the Need. One mother had come several times to be at our Toy Sale. She was not here this year. She had overdosed and died in the spring. Another mother had been beaten by her boyfriend a day before. Another mother had been waiting in line since 2

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Graffiti of dancing kids with TV screens for heads

Loneliness and the Screen

Kenny Goubran, a freshman at New York University, made this provocative statement as he read “The Future of Loneliness,” an essay in The Guardian: “Loneliness, in a way, is not only determined by lack of company but rather, a lack of understanding.” As with anything, the internet provides both gains

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street art of a camera taking a photo

Small Is Big

A couple of days ago, I saw the movie The Glass Castle, based on the best-selling book. The story tracks the trajectory of a family from the viewpoint of the daughter. It is an insightful and heartbreaking journey, filled with bravado, alcohol, and pain. The mother and father end up

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Giant Graffiti Hand pointing to person walking by

What Would Happen to the World if…

People kept their promises. What would happen if men kept their promise when they told a woman they loved her, and vice versa? What would happen if we really meant it when we said those words at the ceremony–for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness

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kids running into one another by artist seth globe painter

If You Start Fast, You End Up Slow…

And if you start slow, you end up fast. This isn’t always true, but it sometimes is. I’ve been encouraging some young adults in ministry this week. Numbers are strange things. They can encourage us when actually things aren’t going well, and they can discourage us when things really are

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