Feb 28, 2016

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He Still Answers Prayers

He Still Answers Prayers

YHWH loves

Today we visited with the homeless.

While grieving from many losses over the past week, we knew that to get out and go downtown, would be the best thing for us. Maneuvering through all of the road construction, we finally came to the first stop. There we saw Charles laying up against a wall, waiting for the food truck to arrive. We were surprised to see him there since the last we heard he had gotten into an apartment. I got out and went over to sit next to him. Charles is an elderly black man, with such a kind spirit about him. I asked him what happened with the apartment, and he said he was still living there but was out doing his laundry, as the apartment building doesn’t have a laundry facility. We talked about his hometown and other things until the food truck arrived. This man always seems to lift our spirits. He is so simple, gentle and full of the love of Abba.

Our second stop was at the men’s dormitory. There we saw David, a rough biker kind of guy that always refuses to accept the handouts we have with verses on them. I said to him, “Hi David, how are you today?” And he said, “…you remembered my name—though I forgot yours.” I told him it was ok if he forgot my name. So I told him again what it was. As he stood in the line for food, I asked him if he wanted an encouraging word. Of course, as always, before I ever got the chance to give him the handout, he said, “NO!”

As David got his food and prepared to go back upstairs, I told him to have a good day, and he said, “I will! Thank you, Derek!” David seems to be the kind of man who has been hardened in life by circumstances, and that the only way to reach him is by living out the kindness and joy of Abba in front of him. In David’s case…seeing is believing. Since we live in the heart of the religious belt of the Country, I can see why there are many bitter people towards anyone who “proclaims” they know Messiah. People say they know Him, yet they live double lives. They say they know Him, yet have nothing to do with people. How does one profess to have a relationship with the Creator, yet hate people? Sometimes, I wonder if we are doing anything good by going downtown to visit the homeless, yet who knows how many have been touched by the smile of Abba through us? For this reason, we keep going.

It was right before I saw David in the line, that I saw a man whom we had prayed with twice—two weeks ago. As I was going down the line and passing out Psalm 121, I looked up and saw James standing there. I knew it was him because we had prayed with him at the third stop, near the Mission, where the larger group of homeless gather for food, and to receive clothing. Two weeks ago, as I had the car rear-hatch open, while distributing clothes, a man came up and asked us for prayer. He really needed prayer and seemed uninterested in the clothes we were passing out. That morning, before we left to go downtown, we had asked Abba to send us people who really needed a touch through prayer.

At that moment, I turned to listen to this man talk about his needs and to explain about his situation. We found out he was a pastor and had a family. He was looking for work and I believe he mentioned something about him and his wife’s relationship. After ministering and sharing with him a while, Rivkah came over and we began praying with him. Later on, right before we left that day, he came back over to us and we continued fellowshipping. I prayed with him again and once I finished, he thanked us. He said he had received what he came for. We wrote his name down to pray for him later in the week.

Today, Abba knew we needed some encouragement ourselves. When I saw that man, James, I asked him how things were going. He said that same day, the day we prayed for him two weeks prior, he received a phone call with a job offer. In fact, he said, not only does he have that job, but a second one as well. He also said since we had prayed, that he and his wife are getting back together and that the things we prayed for concerning his daughter were happening. We praised Abba right there and thanked Him for answering our prayers. James is working now to get out of the men’s dormitory, and that he was there only temporary.

We wanted to share this quick testimony with each of you and remind you that Abba hears us when we cry out to Him. He hears and answers us when we call to Him. Sometimes we may not always receive the kind of answers we are seeking, but most certainly, all will work out for His good purpose and will. This is something we all have to learn, as we too are learning it ourselves. He is always looking to achieve the ‘higher good’ in people’s lives–including ours.

What a joy it was to fellowship, minister to, and to pray with people today. From the large, tall and gentle man who looks like the way Yochanan (John) the Immerser would have looked, to the lady who got so excited talking about the love of God with us, we have grown to love the precious times we have with these people who have nothing else to give to us but their simple, human need to be wanted and loved. What other privilege is there in life but to be used to give a spark of hope to someone who has nearly given up wondering if life was really worth living or not. If the King of heaven came down from above, and washed this servant’s filthy feet, then what else have I to do but to imitate such great love?

Oh…what kind of love is this—of such a One Who saw beyond my repulsiveness, picked me up off the trash pile, and set my feet upon a rock?

If I but fail to show, any less, this kind of love to others, then please Abba, throw me back upon the trash heap you once took me from!

To You be all the praise—for You still answer prayers today!

Shalom, with love,

Derek and Rivkah

P.S. For all of you who have given both monetary and handmade donations to help the homeless–THANK YOU! We are in the process of getting the things they need such as, personal clothing items (new underwear, socks) and backpacks. We have had quite a mild winter here this season, so with all of the clothing donations we have received from Rivkah’s school and our apartment building, we are able to use the monetary donations towards the great need of personal clothing items. When we have finalized all of the purchasing, we will share pictures on our blog of the love each of you has shown towards helping the cause of the needy.

Once again, Thanks to each of you! It has blessed us more than we could ever express. This work…has changed our lives forever!

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