Every first Monday of the month our student ministry heads to Dallas to serve with Union Gospel Mission. Above is a picture of a man named Ricky. Last night Ricky and I were able to spend a good amount of time talking about his story as it directly relates to his time at Union Gospel Mission.
First off I want to tell you about the program that Union Gospel Mission provides. It is a shelter serving homeless men and women in Dallas and its surrounding areas. Right now we specifically work with the men’s shelter. The Mission is completely supported by individual, business and church donations. If you are interested in supporting them click here. (UGM receives no funding from the Government or charitable organizations.) The aspect I love the most about the Mission is that it seeks to meet the physical and spiritual needs of these men and women by providing free food, clothing, shelter, spiritual and personal guidance.
When I was talking to Ricky he was telling me about the phases he, as a “Disciple” goes through when he lives at The Mission. I want to type it all out so everyone can see what an amazing discipleship program it is- but I know most won’t read it! So if you are interested in reading more click here.
Basically there are five discipleship phases! Ricky was telling me how they start out telling about the person of Christ and His purpose. I loved the raw way he described it to me. He also said they taught him how to read the bible…and not just read it but understand it and absorb it; developing disciplines of consistency. I would love to incorporate something like this when my hospitality/discipleship vision comes full circle!!! I am so thankful to see this program…I really think it will influence my future.
Please pray for Ricky (really…please do). He is finishing his phases and moving out of The Mission. My heart is excited and hopeful for him but the realistic side sets in too. How hard it would be to leave a place of hope, security, encouragement and fellowship- to head out to the streets of Dallas where temptations of women, drugs, alchohol and so much more will lay ahead of him. If you think about it please pray for Ricky. Pray for protection and endurance. I pray the Spirit of God stays ever so close and Ricky is determined to love the Lord and live a life honoring to God.
I am really hoping our student ministry somehow sponsors Ricky by writing him letters…or something. As we left last night he was lavishing us with tons of “gifts.” He went to the dry storage and was giving us pringles, capri suns, packs of gum….it was simply a joy to watch him want to give back to us after a relationship has formed over the six months we go to UGM.
Here are some more pics of our time we spend at UGM each month…
There are 80-100 men they serve three times a day.