My Volunteer Adventures… Look out World! Here I Come!Posted on January 27th, 2012.
By: Joy Whorton,
Hope for North Texas Volunteer Coordinator
It’s hard for me to put into words what I experienced last Saturday with the Lords Hands and Hearts Ministry. Early that morning, my daughter, a friend and I made our way to downtown Dallas for what would be our serving adventure. With only a few wrong turns and one major scare (I almost took out a man, who was running into the middle of the highway, just as my phone was ringing) we all made it there, alive. Truthfully, it is always an adventure when you’re in the car with me. So much so that my husband has even banned me from driving in reverse; but that’s another story for another time.
Upon our arrival, my friend, Courtney stated, “This is it…? WOW. I don’t think I knew what we were getting into.” I don’t think either one of us were prepared for what we were about to encounter.
The area that is referred to as “Solomon’s porch” is bustling with volunteers working outside preparing for serving the least of these with food, clothing and hygiene products. Everything happens fast; and before you know it the time to start serving breakfast begins.
That morning I was working the coffee station, which is perfect for an early morning serving opportunity! It was fun passing out coffee and chatting as the people went through the line. Much to my delight, everyone was incredibly friendly and thankful!
So far so good! My 9yr old daughter was enjoying herself and freely going about socializing with all who were present. It was then time to get out of my comfort zone and start meeting people. In truth, it was Courtney, who really encouraged me to do that. I watched her from a distance as she struck-up conversations while simply loving on people. A little unsure of myself, I decided to do the same. I met a lady named Betty, who had hobbled over to me and while in tears, proceeded to tell me her story:
Betty was married for 10 years and had two beautiful boys. Marriage began well but the longer they were married the more her husband began to lash out on her, physically. When her boys were 2 and 5 she decided that she could no longer subject them to their abusive dad; thus she began stashing away cash and devised an escape plan.
She packed a small bag and had her boys ready to go as soon as her husband left for work. Thinking that he had left and was on his way to work, she grabbed her bag and the boys only to find on her way out the door that he had returned due to suspicions of her plans. He beat her so badly that she decided never to try that again.
Years later, they divorced and eventually she married another man. Things were going well. They were attending Church and even felt called by the Lord to begin a homeless ministry. As she began starting the ministry, her new husband began to get physically abusive just as the first had been.
Considering her marriage struggles, she decided to begin focusing on reconciling her marriage instead of beginning the ministry. Unfortunately, the abuse only continued to the point of him placing her in the hospital and him going to prison.
Not too long after this she has found herself not only injured but also living out of her truck and therefore, homeless. As she was telling me her story, she paused to look me straight in the eye and say, “How ironic, I wanted to start a homeless ministry but now I am homeless.”
Living in her truck was working out ok until just last week it broke down and she had to walk 15 miles in the rain, with her cast, to get back to the shelter. She said she was crying out to the Lord asking Him to send someone to pick her up but people just drove pass.
While she was speaking, the story of The Good Samaritan hit me like a ton of brick and I thought, how often have I just driven by?
The rest of the time was spent in great conversations and truly I’m excited that the Lord is doing some great things in her heart and life, despite her situations.
I also believe that God will continue to move mightily in my friend’s life.
During our time there, stories of lives being transformed and set free from the power of sin through Jesus Christ were shared, the gospel was preached, prayers were spoken and the presence of God was strong. This ministry has impacted many lives and continues to prove that God is still in the miracle working business! I would love to encourage you to sign up for serving with The Lord’s Hands & Hearts Ministry, you won’t regret it!
To see how you can serve with The Lord’s Hands & Hearts Ministries CLICK HERE