Journal

Chicago Street Meetings 2009

Thurs. Eve. September 3

Most of the 30 of us arrived and found our motel rooms where “life is great @ Super 8”.

Fri. Sept. 4

After a bunch of people meandered over to McDonald’s for breakfast we loaded up in the vans.  We had devotions in a nearby park & Bro. Ellis reminded us that we don’t just have to be on street corners to witness. . . But anywhere (!) -motel, restaurant, etc.  We were given some instructions then headed into downtown Chicago.  Chicago is beautiful!  Huge, blooming flower pots~ towering buildings~ fountains.  But the streets are darkened by multitudes who need the light of Jesus!  We parked and walked into the Union Station for lunch.  Some of us girls were lined up outside of the restroom and this dark lady started asking questions.  She said, after Rachelle responded to her, “you’re reaching me.  I feel like I’m standing in front of angels.”  Then we sang in front of the “Sears” tower.  Several couples hit the street corners to pass out cd’s.  People hurried past.  Hurry, Hurry, Hurry, Hurry. . . . dark faces, laughing faces, curious faces, hostile faces all hurried past us.  After we “sang for our supper” we went up to Michigan Ave by the Jazz Festival and once again passed out cd’s and sang.  The response here was much more obvious.  Large groups of onlookers and listeners. . .people asking a lot of questions.  One black guy sang with us for a while.  Some of our group had some interesting conversations with ’Gabriel & James’ and ’Abby -the broken hearted lady’, just to name a few. 

Sat. Sept. 5

Delvin Nolt had devotions for us this morning.  He spoke on commitment, and told us that commitment is found in adversity.   Lavern Wadel and Kenny & Judy Weaver joined us for the rest of the weekend.  We stuffed a bunch of cd’s and “Help from above” into sleeves, and then went back into Chicago.  We sang two songs in the Great Hall before we ate lunch.  The ceiling was so high it echoed like crazy.  We briefly passed out more cd’s and sang under the Sears tower.  Then we drove to Pacific Garden Missions for the rest of the afternoon.  Immediately after we unloaded we were ushered into the auditorium and Pastor McNeil told us the history of PGM.  He proclaimed the biggest problem facing America is the laziness of those of us that are saved.  God Bless us all, as we live with fervency and throw off our laziness!  We split into groups and took a tour of their facility.  It is pretty amazing all the ‘good works’ they do.  God Bless them. . . . We listened to a live radio show of “unshackled”.  We ate supper there, and then sang Victory in Jesus  “PGM” style.   J Michigan Street was next on our agenda.  Again people were more relaxed, and took time to listen to the songs and snap pictures.  Several of us tried a new corner, closer to the Jazz Fest. where hundreds of people swarmed past.  People almost grabbed for them.  Back up with the faithful group of singers. . . . .although they were weary, and straining their voices they stepped up a tempo a little and sang “If you’re happy and you know it”, etc.  Great job!    

Sun. Sept. 6

This morning it was spritzing rain just a tad.  But the weather cooperated all day. PTL!  Nathan Byers led out in the morning ‘message’.   He spoke on being touched by Jesus like the leper, and what all it means to us.  We need the touch of Jesus every ‘millisecond’ of our life.  Then we prayed.  Much Prayer, Much Power, Little Prayer, Little Power, No Prayer, No Power.   We talked about how wonderful it was to get some encouragement on the streets, how much it helped us if people appreciated what we were doing.  We ate a delicious lunch of subs (thanks ‘cooks’–appreciate your work!).  Then we went to the Harold Ickey projects.  We sang a bunch of children’s songs, and then some darling black children came outside.  We played with them a lot.  They loved the crazy piggy back rides. . the games of tag. . . .help on the monkey bars, and just all the attention they could get.   “Why are you here?”  “What is this ‘cap’ for?”  Those precious little souls!  One little gal was determined to learn the song “Peter, James, and John”.  Another three year old girl had deep brown eyes.  Somebody said it looked like she saw the horrors of the whole world already, and she was only three.  We stayed there the whole afternoon, and we all enjoyed every minute of it.  But when it was time to leave, it about tears your heart to turn and walk away.  Especially since we realize that this might be the last time we could be with them, due to the tearing down of the ’homes’.  Disheveled, and dirty we went back to PGM to eat supper and ‘try’ to freshen up.  Then we went to the Jazz Fest again for the rest of the evening.  Sometimes during our breaks between singing several groups prayed because of the deep conversations going on.   God was working in the hearts of men off the street, and ours.  It was quite the evening, some real ‘exchanges’ with individuals. . .that. . . .got creepier as time went on.  Satan’s power was so evident, but God’s power is stronger.  It made you so thankful that you don’t have to be the mixed up one on the street, but we can KNOW our Saviour, and we have a ROCK of a foundation.  We kinda ’left in a hurry’ for the safety of the group, and also because it was time to go. . .and then circled around the block 4-5 times waiting on several men who were finishing up conversations.  Heading back to the motel, knowing this is the last night of the street meetings is really sad.  Some nice people stayed up and got the picture cd’s made up, bless their hearts.

Mon. Morning Sept. 7

We got up so early ~~~~Yawnnnnn!~~~~and went to PGM once again for prayer.  Then we went into the auditorium and Dwayne Colvin preached the message.  Later we took a group picture. . . .said good byes. . .L  It was a great weekend.  And all God’s people said, “AMEN!!!!”  

We passed out approximately 7,200 cd’s this weekend.  It  doesn’t necessarily matter how much articles were passed out, but that people soul’s were touched, and that God was glorified.

Highlights

  • Playing with the kids. Carla
  • Spending time with the children and singing at the Jazz Fest. Lavina
  • Playing with the kids at the projects. Caleb
  • Talking with the drunk/high guys and everything in general. Marnell
  • Playing with the children. Dorcas
  • The children at the projects– the whole weekend was great! Jennifer
  • The WHOLE weekend!!! Wesley G
  • The conversations with different people on the street. Neil
  • “Unshackled” and playing with the kids. Rachel
  • Playing with the kids was awesome! JTamara
  • Playing basketball with the “brothers.” Scott
  • Playing with the children. Roland
  • It was great once again.  The power of prayer was very real!  God is amazing! Lavonda
  • Playing basketball at the projects. Wesley M.
  • Encouragement of believers and challenges of the unbelievers. Jaydon
  • “Stories by Viney” Jon a better side… playing with the children at the projects! Ashley
  • Talking with all the different people on the street and playing with the children. Kenny and Judy
  • The time with the kids at the projects was definitely a highlight– it was all great! Cynthia
  • Passing out CD’s left and right at the corner right by the Jazz Fest! and singing with the children at the projects. Nate
  • Sometimes when I would be talking with people on the streets, I could feel Jesus so close that it seemed if I would just turn around fast enough I would see Him standing there.  Our God is alive! Joanna
  • Singing with the group on the streets and visiting with people on the streets. Lavern
  • Playing with the children was definitely a highlight and also going through red lights! Krista
  • Enjoyed working with all of you and thanks for making a great weekend.  Passing out CD’s on far corner at Jazz Fest felt like a guy running for President all the hands that were reaching for CD’s. Delvin
  • “If you’re ugly there is no sense being depressed about it cause it’ll just make it worse.” Pastor McNeil  The whole week-end just really blessed and challenged me again. Thanks to everyone for what you did to make the week-end great! Deanne
  • Playing with the children and the projects was probably the biggest highlight. Wendon
  • Some of the best parts from this weekend for me was the tour of PGM, singing together on the streets, and playing with the children at the projects. Rachelle

Thanks for the EXCELLENT cooperation and spirit! Ellis 

Prayer Requests

(I’m not sure if I got all of these right but even if we don’t know the whole situation God knows exactly who they are and what they need, our responsibility is to pray!)

  • Gabriel and James:  for their spiritual needs
  • Harold:  spiritual need, not ready to commit his life to Jesus
  • Robert Davis:  minister who has backslidden
  • Man at Bennigens
  • Abbie:  separated from her husband Milad
  • Aaron:  spiritual growth
  • Joe Brown:  the balloon man, an alcoholic he needs our prayers
  • Andy:  spiritual growth
  • Tony:  ”                 “
  • Korean couple:  encouragement that they gave, pray that they would keep serving our King
  • Teresa and her family:  that they would stay strong for Jesus
  • Sovita and granddaughter Precious:  ”             “
  • Ben:  spiritual growth
  • Charles and Yolanda:  the couple that Ken and Judy took out for a meal
  • Matt:  Moody student
  • Jewish lady
  • J.W. lady
  • Samuel:  needs to commit
  • Radrigo:  needs the Lord
  • Christopher:  asked for prayer as he ran by
  • the Satan believer
  • Muslim couples
  • the people who said that they are all right
  • the continued work of the CD’s and tracks that we handed out; that hearts would be open and people would be willing to search for something better to fill the void in their life

Special thanks to….

  • God:  for blessing us with good weather, health, and strength to keep going when we felt like giving up! PTL
  • Our leaders/organizers:  Ellis, Delvin, and Kenny
  • Our song leaders:  Delvin, Wendon, Nathan, Caleb, Adrian, Neil, Wesley G., and Lavern
  • Our street assigners:  Jeremy and Jaydon
  • Our photographers:  Lavina and Lavonda
  • Our picture cd compilers:  Lavina, Lavonda, Jaydon, Marnell, and Delvin (sorry if I missed anyone)
  • Our menu planners and shoppers:  Delvin, Lavern, Jeremy, Jaydon, Joanna, Deanne, and Cynthia
  • Our drivers: Delvin, Jeremy, and Lavern
  • Our journal writer:  Jennifer
  • Our Sunday morning message:  Nathan
  • Our Monday morning message:  Dwayne-  a huge thanks to both him and his wife for giving up their time to come join us at PGM for the morning service, it was greatly appreciated!
  • Everyone who came and gave of their time, money, and talent for the cause of Christ! God bless you!