The blurb on the cover says, “A dangerous, homeless drifter who grew up picking cotton in virtual slavery.” “An upscale art dealer accustomed to the world of Armani and Chanel.” “A gutsy woman with a stubborn dream.” And, “A story so incredible no novelist would dare dream it.” But the story is true.
Ron Hall deals in high end art. His clientele consists of the wealthy and the famous, celebrities and athletes and business men. Ron and his wife, Beth, have homes in Dallas, New York and a ranch estate along the Brazos River. They are wealthy.
Denver Moore was an angry, broken former cotton picker who lived on the streets. He’d spent 10 years in prison after hopping freight trains to avoid working the cotton fields any longer. After getting out of prison, he lived on the streets of Fort Worth, Texas for 22 years. In 1998, he was eating at a food kitchen where he was feared by all… except Miss Debbie.
Debbie Hall had been volunteering at a homeless shelter when she met Denver. Not long after that she convinced her husband, Ron, to get acquainted with the homeless man. The story was appropriately frightening, excruciatingly real, and yet powerfully poignant. Over the next several months they actually learn to talk and eventually to trust. The Halls take Denver in as a friend, learning the hard way that real friendship is personally costly.
Denver, in turn, has to risk losing his independence and his bitterness to become part of a family. He enters in in such a way that he’s wanted and wants to be at the bedside as Debbie Hall dies of cancer. All those lives are changed as each learns to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly.
By the time the story is over, Denver Moore becomes an accomplished painter, Ron Hall becomes a humbled, caring human, and Debbie Hall gets her stubborn wish to become Denver’s friend. The book, Same Kind of Different as Me is a must read for anyone who cares to understand the heart of God amidst the brokenness of human beings.
Text: Micah 6:6-8
Listening to the Text
These questions are specifically designed to help you look at the text more carefully.
- Summarize the questions the spokesman for Israel asks.
How do the questions intensify?
- List the three actions God requires of His people.
Applying What We’ve Heard
These questions are to help you see how the text applies to you and others.
- How would you feel if you were brought to trial by God?
- How are you doing in the three areas God requires?
God, judge of all the earth, we confess that we get defensive when we think of coming before you. We know we’re a mess, and yet we don’t want to admit it. We’d rather pretend that we’ve got it all together. In fact, sometimes we can get disrespectful before you as we question your expectations. We almost wonder if anyone can live up to what we should be. Yet, in our honest moments we realize you are clear in what you want from us. We just know how hard it is to be good. Jesus, thank you for taking us as we are. More importantly, thank you for standing between us and God, representing us. Thank you that you are what the Father sees instead of us. Holy Spirit, coax us, encourage us, prompt us, keep us moving in the right direction. We will try to trust and follow. Amen.
Listening to Jesus
Read: John 14:1-14
Philip questions Jesus. He doesn’t understand just who He is or what to expect of Him. Jesus asks if Philip doesn’t really know Him. He’s seen Him work. Philip has seen God through Him. Jesus promises that we will know Him, personally, through the Spirit. And in the end, because we know Jesus and because the Holy Spirit is in us, we will do good things as well.
Responding in Life
- Jot someone a note to encourage them to be faithful in their service.
- Or, jot someone a note that tells them what you see in their life as they live a good life.