Saturday, November 12, 2011

Friday at the LA Dream Center

Another day has come and gone as we serve here at one of the greatest places on the planet. This is the Los Angeles Dream Center where for more than a decade and a half lives have been brought out of darkness and into God's marvelous light.

The day began with Brett and I going to the Discipleship program morning worship. Matt spoke. He graduated from and works in the program and is getting married tomorrow. What an awesome testimony. A couple notes from his message...

"I've made up my mind to follow Jesus and nothing can change that fact."

"When you attain something by compromise, you have to maintain it by compromise."

I'm excited that I'll get to share in their Monday worship time. They close each week, every Friday with awards to the ladies and men going through the program. It is excited.

Our team spent the morning with the "food truck" ministry packing trucks and going out to a location in the city and giving out food. It was a sweet experience and something we've learned from.

I spent the morning with Michael Conner who leads the Discipleship program. We talked about all different kinds of aspects of the disciple program from those entering and working their way through the first year of discipleship. We talked about the needs and effects of crisis management in people's lives as well as ways to understand thinking. It was a great meeting that I gained insight to help to our material, program and people to get The Community Dream Center going.

Over lunch and after we talked to several people who are volunteering and working here at the LA Dream Center. These testimonies are awesome and passionate and eye opening. Gayland who graduates from 2nd year discipleship this Sunday. Eric who lived down the street and will now go to a foreign country to serve hurting people. The stories go on and on.

In the afternoon we worked with "project prevention" that helps families keep their kids out of foster care or get them back. We heard more moving stories of life change. It was incredible to see how a little support and love can change an entire family.

A combination of food truck and project prevention is something we are planing to be doing in our town. Helping hurting people with basic needs costs us so little but makes a huge difference. It also opens people up to hear about Jesus and receive real hope.

I enjoyed a short walk with my friend and team member Andy Hall after dinner. He is a great guy and a great addition to our Drean Center team.

Jonathan Martinez leads outreach on skid row each Friday night. Our team and about 20 other people went to the area where homeless people gather in downtown LA. There are thousands of homeless people. We gave away water, snacks and blankets as well as prayed with people. We love being part of this ministry. We met several more people that served with us who were so sweet. I met Teresa from Spokane, WA. She's a passionate and petite 19 year old with a desire to help hurting people find God. It was so good watching her serve in this not so easy setting.

We ended the night with meeting a friend who just flew in to town. Again God's richest resource is people. We also drove down Sunset to Hollywood and back on Wilshire. LA is amazing. Tomorrow will bring many more blessings.

I'm missing my family. Our youngest daughter goes to all district band tomorrow morning to audition. The rest of my family will be traveling to Annapolis, MD with our oldest daughter and the Bassett HS matching band for national competition. Please pray for my family.

More to come ...

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