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    Monday, July 12, 2010

    iServe Day 2

    Today was the second day of service and it was a really good time!

      We all woke up super early and met in the lobby at 6:15am.  Many of us were rubbing the sleep out of our eyes as we descended the stairs or came off the elevator, but all of us had an eager anticipation of what we were going to do and what God was going to do through us.

      We were all briefed on the happenings of the day.  All of us were to feed breakfast to the people in the homeless shelters as well as lunch.  Somewhere in the midst of the food serving, the group that was selected to go to the Home of the Innocent was to head out.

      I (Marv) was in the group who headed off to the Men's Homeless shelter along with 54 others, the leaders were: Lynne, Jim Turnbull, June, George and Randy.  There, we served food, prepped dinner, organized the food pantry, unloaded a truck, cleaned dishes, swept and mopped floors, sorted mail, cleaned toilets, organized a newly stocked freezer and pet a tortoise! (seen on left; watch videos here: http://www.youtube.com/user/picako7 )
      Although I quickly ran through the things we did, it was not "easy" nor was it done quickly.  They put us to work and we saw God work!  Many of our teens engaged with the men from the shelter (and kids and women who had a special meal time...more on that later).  We were all wrapped and touched by many of the stories of the people we heard.

      For example, I bumped into a guy named Kenneth who was from Memphis, TN.  He had no place to go and was directed to Wayside Christian Mission, where he came and has now lived for 2 years.  Here he has received love and care and was given free lodging and a job on sight at the mission (he was the dishwasher).  He told of his future plans (because now he can actually have them!) in which he was to get married, get a job and a house and be the step-dad to his fiance's son!

      Rebecca Wakeley (during the women and children's special meal time) hung out with some women and children and talked with a lady, heard her story and talked to her about finding a church and sharing with her about the Lord!

      Many more stories like this were shared and touched the lives of our teens.  Watching my team work so hard with no complaining and serving with so much joy was a delight to see!  I even pushed 2 young ladies WAY out of their comfort zones and saw them both grow because of the challenge!

      My team was only a small part of what Jesus did today, the other groups were out cleaning dirty bunk beds, lifting heavy things in a warehouse, working with disabled kids (at the Home of the Innocent) and running into things they didn't prepare for (like seeing dead mice...and live ones).  God is stretching these teens beyond what they thought they could be stretched by and it is a blessing to see.

      After our time at the different sites, we came back, relaxed a bit and headed out to dinner at the Golden Corral!  We ate well to say the least and were well satisfied to go into the rest of the night.

     We had another time of worship, went to prayer stations around the room to experience, understand and read about God's Love and Love in general.

      After the stations, we moved into a time of sharing what we saw and what was saw God doing today.  It was (as last night was) a tremendous blessing!  We heard story after story of what God was doing (i.e. the ones above) and it was a roomful of people praising the Lord for what He was doing in and through them!

      We heard a word from Pastor Scott on perspective and seeing this trip not as a "mountain top" but as a flat plain on a map that God is taking us on.  It's not about the "high" or "low" points he said...it's about the Journey!

      After the time of worship and Word, we had some free/down time and then headed to bed to meet together at 7am for more of the same "type" of work but of course it will be a different experience!

      To view videos from today (my work station; the prayer stations and worship) go to the youtube account here: http://www.youtube.com/user/picako7