. It has been almost a year since my family and I have moved to the trailer park, and it has not been an easy leg of the journey. We have struggled financially, planted seeds tirelessly, and waited patiently for fruit without seeing much. In the past year we have spend most of the time seeking the reasons for God bringing us into this difficult season, knowing for sure it was to teach us something. The demon of depression has haunted us regularly, and the battle against doubt and uncertainty has been waging since our arrival. We have had to explain to the children why we can’t buy them new shoes, asked God why none of our support letters have generated any response, and all along not see a sliver of change in the lives of the people we came to minister to.
What a great way to start out a blog. No worries, even though this has been the majority of our time spent here, it has not been all that bad. James tells us to rejoice in our trials because the testing of our faith results in steadfastness. I bare witness to this truth. Though we still struggle financially, it has gotten better, and though we still have a bit of uncertainty, we know the direction that God is moving us. The other great thing is that God has seen fit to allow us to see some fruit in what He is doing through our ministry. Here are a few stories to what is going on:
A single mother of two young children lives just a few trailers down from us. This woman walks her children around the dusty gravel road that runs through the trailer park. Pushing her two children in a stroller she always waves to us as she passes by the trailer. Rebecca, decides one day to join her in the walk. Through a few conversations and walks with this woman Rebecca starts to show her Christ. About a month ago I had the privilege of baptizing this woman. Since then she has asked her boyfriend to leave the house because they are not married, attends the worship gathering regularly, and has seen her need for a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Since then we are seeing God do some wonderful things and a small gathering in the trailer park is forming. Pray for God to continue to use these people and raise up workers from among the harvest.
One day after cheer practice two of the girls came up to me and said, “Coach, are you going to start a church here in Slidell? Cause, if you do we will totally come.” Since that conversation I have spoken to another girl and possibly two who said they would attend a small gathering right there at the gym. So, as it turns out, the possibility of a gathering of youth will be formed around the truth of Jesus in the gym that God has placed me in for work. When this happens, lives will be changed, and so will the face of cheerleading in Slidell. Please pray that the Lord will use this, and allow this to happen.
After spending the afternoon at a block party at a low income apartment complex with the Bridge Church Tangipahoa Parish group, I learned of a great need there in that community. Many youth and children, but very few fathers. Mostly single mothers and grandmothers taking care of these children. They have no one to look up to, except the gangsters and drug dealers at the community center basketball court a half mile away. God showed me a man who used to live there, has influence in the neighborhood, and most importantly has a relationship with Jesus. Now, we are trying to get the approval of the management company to not only put a half court basketball court, but a male role model who will go once or twice a week to invest in the lives of these young men. Please pray that God will allow this to go through, and we can get in the way of these kids going down the wrong path.
Here are a few of the many stories that God has given us, and there will be many more to come. I hope that you can pray for us and our community as we try to take the light into the dark places. God has started what we are calling Oikos Ministries, this is the ministry that my family and I are directing, and the avenue that God is taking us down on His mission. See, most of the time when someone moves into a new city they start to look for a church. What we at Oikos do, is look for a place where the church isn’t, then we ask Jesus to build His church there. How, well that is another blog all in itself, but it starts with you praying with us for workers for the harvest.