Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Trust

In early May as I began to mentally compose the summer kids ministry God gave me a picture for the summer. It was the scene in which Jesus took a midnight stroll across a lake. As the apostles where in the boat fighting the waves "Jesus was about to pass by" but their fear of him stopped Jesus. Jesus turned and looked at them. It startles me, scares me, awes me, settles my anxious heart to see him there, standing in the wind and waves....looking at me.
Rockwood is full, bursting, ripe, white for the harvest. In January of this year God asked me to face my fears. So I began the street ministry. Now I fall all over myself in love with these people. Last week while I stood on the corner with one of my favorite ladies she pointed out a group of guys walking past and related the story of the man they beat up the night before. At the same time a stream of sirens blared past on their way to the store behind us. Another robbing, another beating, another proof of brokenness.
God gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have ever lasting life. Christ died for them. So we live, and walk, and breath, and love our neighbors.
The first time I met Elena she said, "There's something special about Rockwood." I agree. That's why we're all here. His blood pumps through these streets.
This past Saturday marked the halfway point of the summer kids ministry. Kristine couldn't sleep Friday night thinking about Barberry, worrying over "our" kids. I took my turn Saturday night. Early in the morning I gave up. At the top of a cliff above the Columbia River I watched the sun rise over the eastern mountains. I thought about Rockwood, Barberry, Colorado. Face after face came through my mind. People that I've grown to love here. One's that don't know Christ, yet are so close. If only I could stay in their lives a little longer. My move to Colorado takes place in five weeks. Two days after the last kids event. How do I leave the people of Rockwood? How do I leave the kids of Barberry? I desperately want to bring them Christ. I long for them to have what I have. I want to stay in their lives; a protective mentoring shield. The little ones look up at me with big hopeful eyes and slide their tiny hands into mine. I think my chest aches 90% of the time now.
To trust God means to trust Him in the details of life. Right now, for me, it is with my move and new place in life. Mostly, it is to trust Him with the lives I am leaving behind.
Last week the Samoan family lost their little eighteen month old Vie. She drowned in the pool on Thursday. In the months and years to come whoever read this please pause and pray for them. Pray they will be drawn to God through this and that they will recognize the difference between the lies of the enemy and His true voice. Pray they will know the depths of God's love for them.

Andrea (Summer Kid's Zone)

Monday, July 12, 2010

1 Peter 2:12

My favorite class I had ever taken as I went through public school and finished with a mix of community college and bible college was a philosophy or religions class at the community college. It provided a couple of my favorites together: unbelievers and open discussions on theology and philosophy. At then end of the course I found myself sitting across a very astute new age agnostic over drinks. His family was heavily religious of some Christian flavor, and his father was a pastor. He rejected his upbringing and put me in corner with this question: "Have you ever seen the waiting lines for the uninsured trying to get on state health insurance?" "How could a whole cross section of the US be so opposed to helping people with such basic needs as health care?" Sadly, I did not really have anything to say to him.

5 years later I live with a group of believers reaching out to the poor through the apartment complex initiative. Compassion connect also puts on free health care clinics to serve some of the most broken. If the question ever comes again I am ready to boast about: Milan, Jennifer, David & Elena, Josh, Tyrone...
 
"Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us."

-1 peter 2:12

-Dan Johnson

Friday, July 9, 2010

Fruit of Divine Love and Patience

After I posted Dan's perspective on doing ministry at Barberry with children, I recieved a text message from a friend who was going to return a scarf we left at his house. He said he would swing by the apartments this week. My first thought was "How will we ever coordinate being home when he can stop by?"

Then I realized, it doesn't even matter! Without a second thought I told him he could leave the scarf with neighbors anywhere around us. Yes, in Rockwood. At Barberry Village.

As I clicked send, it sunk in how radical this is. How many people can even say that in their comfortable safe suburban neighborhoods?

We love our neighbors.

And what a difference a healthy amount of Divine love and patience through sacrifice can make - in any community.