Derrick wants to talk about the offering. It’s been on his mind. He tells me about his old Friday night routine; how he would take long walks downtown, collecting other’s lost pennies along the way. Come Sunday, whatever he had collected, he’d offer it to the collection. “It felt so good to give, I eventually changed the routine. I started throwing pennies down on my way to church–you know, give other people a chance to feel like a cheerful giver.”

And that’s what Derrick wants us all to be, cheerful givers. “Even if you do not have money, you have words. Offer your words. Use the offering as a public display of your faith.”

Derrick made it to Haywood Street a long time ago. “You know, this place is so much more than a meal,” he begins. “Haywood Street is a place where you come as you are. And that Brian Combs!,” he shakes his head and laughs to himself. “I can’t figure it out, but I like that guy. When God sent me Brian, he sent me a bother that wasn’t about nonsense.” Derrick goes on, “You know, they call this place Holy Chaos, but really everything is in order. When you come to Haywood Street, you see people trying to get up. If someone makes is here, you know they are trying.”

When Derrick speaks, I often find myself left speechless. And so, all I can bring myself to say is, “Amen, Derrick. Amen.”

“But if you’re going to write one thing from this conversation,” he tells me, “Write that I love Jesus. I don’t know all the stories and the diagrams and all that. I just know that I love Jesus.”

Amen, Derrick. Amen.