As we started the gang ministry, it became clear to me that we needed a place close to where the teens live. A ‘safe place’ we could meet with them. I found a wonderful apartment in a nice neighbourhood that meets all our criteria, that is, the right location and it is big and cheap. It is a 2-bedroom apartment with two floors in a new building, which is in good condition. The landlord is great guy who lives two houses down and seems very supportive of me, my team and our ministry.
These are exciting times because we see so clearly, that God is leading us and guiding us, and with the gift of the apartment, I believe it will take our ministry to the next level. The community is accepting me (us) well, and many of the local kids know my name, so that is nice.
We were able to get some things for the apartment... a couch and chair, bed, and a fridge. The apartment needs to be set up for youth to be able to come in, watch a movie, sit and relax, and talk. The idea is that we meet with gang members one-on-one and separate them from the larger group. What is so exciting is that it is begging to work! Very soon, we will have a regular Bible study time as well.
The other night, I discovered that right beside my house there are kids from the same gang hanging out there and doing "tambay" which is so close to the English of "standby.” This gives my team and me regular access to a key group of youths and provides lots of opportunity for conversation time and for building trust.As of now, we have about seven youth that we think we can take to the next step and present the gospel. It is hard because if we move too quickly in presenting the gospel we can turn them right off and make is so hard to get another chance. The hard part for me is that because they are from the low-income families it is more common that they do not speak English, so I do not really get to make the verbal presentation, which makes me sad, but I can do lots to help. I can encourage and strengthen my teammates Rodel and Jason as they are becoming bolder in their witness.
Also, I have already had some great conversations with my landlord. He has been teaching me about some history, and I have been talking about what I do, and even what it is to be a Christian. I am extremely confident that in time he will come to the lord, I see the desire for something great in his life, and I know only God with fill that longing.
I am excited and thankful that God has provided an apartment and a ministry base for our team. However, moving into this neighbourhood, new ministry, and new apartment has increased my expenses.
Therefore, to make our new apartment fully functional I am asking for some one-time donations to complete the set up. And I am asking for increase of $300 in monthly support.
I ask that you become part of the changing of the youth’s lives. The needs are so great, but the opportunities are even greater. Please join in on seeing lives transformed by the power of God.
I thank you for your support in prayer and finances already, but now is the time to step the ministry happening right now.
PS. Please pray with me for safety, wisdom and guidance for that I know prayer is the most important. And pray for my teammates as well.