The focus of the story is pastor Jay Reinke, whose Concordia Lutheran Church opens its doors to the various struggling men who pass through town seeking work. Reinke doesn't hesitate: "Jesus didn't have our neighbors."
As the prospects of the local dispute threaten to destroy Reinke's career, the story ingredients slowly thicken, and Reinke's anxieties pierce a hole in his cheery demeanor. Among the many other men whose lives Moss outlines, truck driver Keith — whom Reinke initially welcomes into his home —stands out as one of several frustrated men Reinke tries to help and winds up threatening the entire operation. In retrospect, Reinke faces the same challenges he helps others overcome.