Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Thursday...

I want to tell you about my Thursday last week. I was given the great privilege of working with BASICS and Feed My Sheep - two groups of soldiers for Christ who get very little "praises of men" or recognition. But let me tell you..I see no greater people to serve with than these two groups.



BASICS stands for Brothers and Sisters In Christ Serving. That should say it all. This is a group of missionaries sent to Milwaukee. We lived "on the wall" before moving out the country and maybe that is why we jump at the chance to go back. Joe and I felt like Rahab in the wall of a sin-filled city. Right on the edge. And BASICS goes in...every day...to minister and love on the people who need it the most. I don't have enough time to share all the ways BASICS loves on the people of Milwaukee, but I will share one initiative they have: to cover the Milwaukee Public Schools in prayer!



There is one school in particular in need of great amounts of prayer: South Division High School. This is the most diverse high school in the MPS system, which has resulted in great gang activity. The enemy has had a stronghold in this school for decades. BASICS is now fighting back! And what cool thing did God do??? He put a God-fearing, Christ-following believer as principal! Praise God!



So, this principal invited BASICS to come down for a day and serve lunch to the teachers/staff.



This is where Feed My Sheep comes in. FMS is a food ministry based at our church. Bottom line: they feed God's sheep with healthy, wonderful food!



BASICS calls FMS and asks if they can cater a lunch for 200 teachers and staff at South Division High School. FMS says yes. BASICS puts out a call to volunteers to come down and help serve the food.



And Joe and I answered that call.



So...long introduction, but this how my Thursday began. I knew I was running low on gas (and money) and so after I dropped off the kids at school, I knew I HAD to spend my last $12 to put some gas in the car. That would give me enough to get to church, where I was meeting my Bible study leader (who went down with Joe and I), and then enough to get back home. The problem...I didn't make it to the gas station! Now, I am a 39 year old woman who has never run out of gas until this year! Now I have done it twice!



I was cutting the time close as it was, and now I found myself stranded on Highway F with no gas and 4 year old in tow. I knew there was a gas station about 1 mile up the road (I had hoped to make it there), so Lincoln and I started walking. Multiple cars zoomed by. Zoom! Zoom! Zoom! I was almost in tears as I thought about how I might not even make it to South Division at all. How would I buy a gas can AND enough gas to get me into town? I just didn't see how it would happen, so I was rehearsing in my mind what I would say to Joe and the rest of the gang.



Suddenly a car slowed down and woman shouted, "Do you need a ride?"



"Oh! Yes!"



I grabbed Lincoln and ran to her car. We sat down and the first thing out of her mouth was, "Do you believe in God?"



"Ummm..yes! I love Him!"



"Well, good...I thought you might think I was crazy, but God told me to pick you up. I drove by once and then God told me to turn around and pick you up."



This wonderful woman took me to the gas station and waited while I went inside to ask if they had a gas tank for sale. The woman behind the counter said, "Oh sweetie. I have a gas can out back with 2 gallons in it. Will that get your car here?"



When I told her it would indeed, she offered the gas for free!



The woman in the car drove me back to my car and waited as I put the 2 gallons in. Then she said, "Look, I would feel much better if I follow you to the gas station. I can be a little late to work."



"What is your name? I want to pray for you!" That was all I could think to say.



"Robbie. And I could use your prayers. I just got a divorce, my kids are sleeping on mattresses on the floor and I just picked up two recliners from the side of the road. That's all I have. My hours just got cut. I had to sell my washer and dryer and I could use your prayers. But...I know my God hears me!"



So, I put in my last $12 into the gas tank and puttered along to church. I dropped off Lincoln with a friend, who was gracious enough to watch him all day, and got to church about 20 minutes late to meet Lindy. We had only 10 minutes to get all the way downtown. I felt so bad.



Miraculously, we got to South Division High School only 1 minute late - not sure how that happened, but it did!



So, we get to the school. No door handles! None. No one can just walk into this school. A security guard saw us and opened a door that led right to a metal detector. "Are you with BASICS?"



We nodded.



"Oh, bless you! Come on in! We need you here today more than ever!"



We were told the story of what happened only 14 hours earlier. One of the brightest, most well behaved kids in the school suddenly went crazy. He almost gouged out the eyes of the guard standing before us. He had two black eyes that were very swollen. He hurt several other guards, as the strength of this boy had suddenly tripled. It took 5 guards and a taser gun to finally subdue him. The whole school was shaken. Believers said he had been demon possessed and that it happens often here. Knowing this, they were worried that BASICS would not come. We assured them, we serve a greater power!



The guard directed us to the second floor and said there would be a guard up there to let us onto the 2nd floor. Again, no door handles. We could only be let in from someone standing on the inside.



As we walked in, FMS was wheeling in the food. The BASICS director, Mark, instructed Lindy and I to start praying over each and every one of the tables in the faculty lunch room. We prayed, being totally led by the Spirit as we laid our hands on the tables and chairs and prayed that God would be present.



Soon, the teachers and staff started coming in for lunch. Imagine their surprise and shock at seeing a decorated room and smelling the aroma of fresh soups, salads and wraps. They were stunned! And then...we just loved on them. Joe ladled out soup, others served the salads and wraps. Lindy made sure everyone had a drink of their choice and my job was to sit with the teachers and talk to them. What a privilege that was!



Oh, these teachers all asked the same question, "Why are you here?"



"To thank you. To support you. To let you know that you are being prayed for."



We encouraged the teachers to fill out prayer request cards. They did! We gave them a treat and a "Love Letter From Your Father". We laughed. And many teachers left the room in tears.



At the end of the day, we had 75 prayer cards filled out. And I left a changed woman.



And I can't wait to go back.



The enemy tried to keep me away and God intervened. The enemy tried to keep BASICS and FMS away, but God-led soldiers persevered. Thank you, Jesus!



Please pray for Robbie, right now. Pray that God would bring her practical things: she really wants a couch or a bed for her to sleep on. Pray that God would encourage her and love her in a way that fills her to overflowing.



Please pray for South Division High School, right now. Pray that God would triumph over the darkness that has held that school for so long. Pray for protection of the guards, the teachers and the students. And pray for the principal, who is unashamed of his Savior and tells his staff every day that only Jesus can make a difference at that school.

3 comments:

Brooke said...

Thanks for reminding me what an amazing and all-powerful, all-knowing, in every detail God, we serve!

Just prayed for Robbie.

Bear Creek Mama said...

oh my, oh my, oh my! What an amazing testimony to a Great God and the people who so long to serve Him! What a cool way to see Him working and thank you for sharing His Glory.
Praying for Robbie and the school...

Brooke said...

Just read this again, with Justin, and this is seriously a miracle. Love it, gave me goose bumps.