“I had to lose everything to realize what I truly had. Being homeless gave me light. I thank God for that.” These are the humble words of a man who lost his career, home, and family. It wasn’t gambling, drugs, or alcohol. All it took was a simple disease to take everything he loved from his life.

Junga is a victim of Crohn’s disease, a chronic inflammatory bowel disease of the digestive tract. We’ve all experienced some type of abdominal pain. If you haven’t, imagine your stomach being gripped firmly by hands filled with glass, stretching from every angle like some form of clay. Crohn’s disease may feel one-hundred times worse, and as Junga shared his condition I was completely sympathetic. One can only imagine how it must feel to lose everything due to something so unpredictable.

Work was a struggle, and being continuously hospitalized caused him to lose his job. This resulted in the lost of his home, wife, and two daughters. It has been over two years since he last saw his daughters. It has been over two years since he last had a home, yet his aurora and the light in his heart shines brighter than the stars amongst the heavens.

How can a man who lost his health still smile? How can a man who lost his home and family not grieve, not cry himself to sleep, not hate the very existence of his life? Why isn’t he angry, and how does the acceptance in his blood flow perfectly through his veins, heart, soul, and spirit? I don’t know how. I know I would grow weak, my legs would tremble with each step I take, hands rapidly shaking as I try to support my stomach in pain, bowing over as I accept my defeat to my illness. Not Junga. He stands tall, greeting and waving at each speeding car that passes him by. I watched his kindness and was disgusted by those who ignored, disrespected, judged, and assaulted him. To those who were kind enough to give, I watched nothing but gratitude sparkle in his eyes. Never greedy, but always grateful.

Junga taught me a valuable lesson. Never give up, and what we go through in life is either suppose to teach us a lesson or make us stronger. Hopefully we get the lesson the first time, because if we don’t we’ll simply keep experiencing simular situations in life.

“Before I was homeless I use to judge those living in the streets. I assumed they were bums too lazy to find a job. Now that I’m homeless, I understand we’re all here for a different reason. Life happens, I’m just blessed to still be alive” ~ Junga

29 thoughts on “Junga

  1. mphadventuregirl says:

    Never would have imagined it that way. I do a deep connection to those less fortunate to me. In high school, I realized that the vast majority of people live in poverty. In that moment, I knew I wanted to do something to help. Now I am planning to work in Nonprofit and help give back to that community

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mstoywhisperer says:

    Thank you for following my blog. This piece hits home for me. In fact, while I was employed, I met several interesting homeless people. Although I started off trying to help them, “Garry” and “Stanley” ended up being two of the most relevant and supportive people in my recent journey. A few references to them are within and In meeting – call you back waiting to hear about a volunteer opportunity that supports the homeless. Be well.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. says:

    When I was doing my doctorate I lived in noisy apartments so had to get out for extended periods. I took long – and I mean long – walks every day and/or night. I learned that street people are just as individually unique as anyone else. To lump them all together as “bums,” “mentally ill” or whatever imo is a gross simplification. I met some whom I think might have been saints. No kidding. Trippy saints. But saints nonetheless.
    Mountain men and women in Asia who can withstand the cold are often revered. In Ottawa, Canada (cold as hell), they are not only ignored. Also sometimes bullied and harassed. Sad scene. And even sadder souls that bully them.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. "Pucky" says:

    Pucky feels a shutter up his brain stem and into the cortex. He doesn’t understand how other Pucks can be so cruel. But he also believes in a higher Puck, a Godly Puck. And he feels maybe, just maybe Pucks like that of Junga, are his messengers here on Earth!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Karlo Pacana says:

    Hey Tom! I was actually just planning to tell you that you’re my 100th subscriber, but decided last minute to check this post about Junga and all I can say is that you really write with pure emotion. Junga’s story also reminded me of this quote: “Other people a fighting a battle you know nothing about, be kind, always.” Hoping to read more. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. xKickz says:

    Thank you for doing what you do. I’m glad someone out there takes the time to reach out to the homeless. Everyone has a story to tell and the homeless sometimes all they want is someone to talk to. It pains me to see society neglecting homelessness, but with this post I am reminded I too can contribute in a small way. Thanks you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. betweenthelines2017blog says:

    Kindness, understanding, love…so much generosity and honesty in your written voice…I’m touched beyond words…Not only by the stories (they brought tears in my eyes) but also by your gift, because writing like this comes from Above…Thank you for following my blog, I’m honored and grateful to read your amazing articles!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jael Sook says:

    This broke my heart. “Life” can take any of us down–it’s not always about bad choices–so when we see people on the street, especially, we should thank God that “there but for His grace, so go we”.

    Liked by 1 person

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