It's been an interesting week in the shop and church building. Lots of people in quite hard spots really and some hard stuff to deal with. One of our hardest situations involves stuff being stolen - sigh. Mobile phone, money from our money jar near our coffee, our staff members lunch from the fridge (that had her name on it) ... Bizarrely the one we had proof of who it was, was the lunch (she had been the only person in the space). So today I spoke to her about it - or tried. She denied it and walked off initially and then later on came and interrupted a conversation I was in and said that she knew "I wanted to talk to her and that she wasn't impressed". I calmly said I would talk to her about it on tomorrow as she walked off (that was all around our morning church gathering). This afternoon someone else was praying in the space and this woman came in and we expect she took some more stuff. As I was sitting just before our evening service she came up to me and said "I know you want to talk tomorrow but I can't talk then but I can talk now" and then left the building. I sat for a minute, prayed and then went out - going I have to take that as an invitation for a conversation. I went out and calmly walked up to the woman and said her name starting a conversation. She then lashed out at me, yelling at me and saying various things that didn't make sense - a huge amount of aggression.
It's hard stuff - at the time I was able to sigh but it is hard stuff and I'm angry and processing it all.
It is the hard end of the presence we want to be - and sometimes the hardest thing is holding the line and loving people well enough to truly love them and not just let stuff go.