Monday, December 13, 2010

In the Bleak Midwinter - Glory!

As some people know, we had concerns about how things might go yesterday. However, because it was sooooo cold. We didn't have any of the problems we thought we might face. The freezing weather was actually a blessing because it kept the trouble makers of the past 2 weeks away. The people who came yesterday were people who literally live on the street. Many of them came by quickly to have a meal with us before Boutwell opened up at 5.

The attitude of the people who live on the streets and those who live in the nearby low-income housing is very different. They might share some of the same needs but the expectation and response is very different. Our goal is to share the love of Christ by helping people with immediate needs and to provide help to those who want change but don't know how to do it (or don't think they are worthy of it).

Because it was a quieter afternoon for us, we were able to have some great conversations with folks. One example of this is a man I'll call J-J. He showed up wearing sandals because his other shoes had been stolen. J-J has always been a very quiet somber man, never asking for much, and pretty much wouldn't communicate with anyone except JM, the man in charge of the ministry. But when another fella from the ministry took the shoes off of his own feet for him to have, J-J smiled, the wall came down and he opened up. We learned he had recently come off of drugs and wants to stay off them. JM is going to see if he can get him into a local recovery ministry this week.

As cold and miserable as it was yesterday (and the streets of Birmingham were MISERABLE yesterday), it was amazing to see how God used the weather to His glory and how relationships were made and strengthened.

Yesterday I was amazed again by the love God has for people and how I got to see it in action. God can do anything.

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