My mission field
For the past six months I’ve been heading out to this estate nearly every Friday. I’m getting to know the kids, (as well as their names!) and Jesus-conversations have started to crop up more often now with them.
We rock up around 6.30pm and pray together for 15 minutes before we walk onto the estate. Every time there will be kids out waiting for us, and now that it’s lighter the younger kids have started to show up again too. We might get a football game going, or we might walk around and pray as we go, seeing where God’s at work.
If we play football, we usually aim to have a half-time talk where we’ll tell a story from the Bible and explain a little about Jesus. We’re lucky if we can get their attention for more than 5 minutes, but the stories always keep most of them listening. It’s especially fantastic because they can often lead to more in-depth conversation afterwards with some!
Recently we’ve put into motion the makings of a homework help scheme for the estate with the help of those in church already involved in one. We’ve gotten interest from parents and some kids, and we’re hoping that spending an hour or so a week in the homes of families will open up not just physical doors but spiritual ones too! It’s really difficult to get to know any of the families as outsiders to the estate, and this is a real way to practically love and bless those we wouldn’t otherwise be able to meet.
Here’s some lessons learned while on estate visits:
- Big scores on Temple Run can earn you (fleeting) admiration from kids (Note: anything under 500,000 is not impressive. I’ve got 422,000…)
- Being socked in the head with a football is Not Fun.
- If you buy anything from the corner shop, be prepared to part ways before you’ve had any of it.
- If you don’t keep your eyes open, you’re guaranteed to be hit by someone going to fast on something with wheels.
- You can never judge by face value what a kid has seen, heard and lived through.
- Jesus is the most important thing that they need – but love, attention and laughs are massively valuable.
If you heed these lessons, you’ll have a great time every time – and hopefully leave an impact on the lives of an incredibly fun bunch of kids.