Faith Comes From Hearing

romans10-17Two people tonight asked me if I was a Pastor and a couple of others told me they liked my preaching! The best of all was when a worker at Project WARM told me that the men respected me and really liked it when I came and gave a devotional. I’m still smiling! I told him that I had never talked about God or did a lesson out of the Bible until about a year ago! He was shocked!

I told them that I was not a preacher and didn’t know how to preach! One guy said “You preached it tonight!” I had to laugh! I read and discussed Matthew 25:31-46. It best tells why I spend time there if for no other reason just to be positive and welcoming. Treat every person as though they were Jesus standing in front of you! Feed them, clothe them, take them in, visit them in prison!

The Bible spells it out simply in those verses! I have to keep it simple for myself!

I try to choose something that applies to my personal life and also lets these men know that I am there because I would not want to be anywhere else. I realized tonight that 30 or more homeless men here in South Bend know me by my first name. . When I leave they thank me and bless me and know my name! (Without seeing my name tag!)

Tonight before I prayed the last time, I asked the men to please keep me and my healing foot in their prayers. I need their prayers just as much as they need mine, that’s a good relationship between friends and many have become friends now. There were questions and concerns about my health! Homeless men concerned and praying for me….God is Amazing in the way He works!

How many of you can say that you know the names of at least 10 homeless people in your home town? How many know you by your name? By sight?

I used to go to a nearby bar and meet friends several evenings a week….like the show Cheers! Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name!

Now I go to Project WARM where everybody knows my name and I come away feeling on top of the world and blessed beyond words!

Alcohol cannot do that, drugs cannot do that, but giving time and sharing God’s love can do that!

Once again, I just had to share my experience! I got there at 7:45pm and was pulling into my drive at exactly 8:57! So much happens within that short time frame that it doesn’t seem possible! The men come in at 8pm, eat about 8:10 and around 8:40 we have a devotional, tonight a man played a guitar and sang “I Can Only Imagine” by Mercy Me. After that, I read, discussed and played the song “What If God Was One Of Us” from my cell phone while the guys read the words I printed out for them. We prayed, I came home and they keep warm and will rest out of the elements.

So thankful for this opportunity every time!

Thankful – 1/2 Way Through!

thankful-1-thessalonians-5-18This is a copy of the letter that went to the churches who have sponsored cots at Project WARM. We thought since we are 1/2 through the season our FaceBook friends might like to read this as well:

We are now officially 1/2 way through the Weather Amnesty season! The first half of the year has been remarkably busy, a learning experience for many of us, an impactful experience for the guests and we continue to be excited for the next two months. As I look back to the beginning of this season to today a few things stick out to me:

1. The pace of volunteer activity could not have been imagined. While I was concerned about how we would feed up to 30 guys a night, and how our volunteers would react, we have filled EVERY night with wonderful food for the guests. The volunteers are so excited about this that the entire month of February is also reserved by volunteers! As I write this the next food reservation available is 3/5 and there are only 14 days left for food volunteers. This is incredible!

2. The Bible study that is held on Thursday mornings has been incredible. We are slowly walking through the Gospel of John and we continue have super participation. This last week we had 12 guys attend and many participate. There are guests who know the Bible solidly and some who have never read it. The Word is jumping out on Thursday mornings to the guys in fresh new ways.

3. One of my favorite moments of the year occurred just a week ago. We had a volunteer that gave a short devotional about how iron sharpens iron (Proverbs 27) and walked through a quick explanation of what that meant for him. He sat down and then for the next 15 minutes the guests asked for specific Bible verses to be read to the entire room. It was unprompted, raw and incredible. When all of the readings were done a guest tugged on the shoulder of another volunteer and was moved that all of those verses were positive and motivational. This guest had never read the Bible and was surprised to hear what great messages it had, and that many of the other guests knew the scripture. HE wanted to know the scripture and read it as well. The volunteer pointed him to a Bible and he was excited to dig in.

While there may be challenges every now and again we are continually open to God’s instruction, incredibly and humbly thankful for the financial support, and completely taken by the overwhelming support of the volunteers.

Thank you for your ongoing support to this important ministry.