Friday, June 13, 2008

The first week of my journey.

Dear family,

I arrived safetly in LA, and have gotten settled. I hope ya'll (thats the states coming out already) are still praying for me. Its so amazing here at the dream center, I have attached some pictures.. (not too many) for your viewing pleasure; one of the dream center, some of new friends I have met (from ALL over the world, switzerland, sweden, all over the US, etc..), some of the cafe I am currently typing in, and some of the palm trees so you can envy me.. haha. Kidding I wouldn't want you to do that.

So to give you a glimpse of how 24/7 this place is.. I will tell you about my week. The rest of the summer I will be serving with Metro Kidz (which is right up my alley), but this week im just bouncing around from ministry to ministry to experience the center.

Monday I got in and set up in my room, I still dont have ANY roomates so it makes for some lonely times, but im sure i'll miss them when my two other roomates come in. Monday night I met some amazing people and we went to Vons (grocery store), and walked around the block.. but I was SO TIRED by the time I was done.

Tuesday I began ministry right away, in the morning was a campus wide meeting and we came together for a good word, and some crazy games. Then in the afternoon I joined in ministry with hope for the homeless youth, which is a ministry that goes to several different sites around LA - we went to venice beach, which was beautiful but was so crazy. La is a funny place you can go to a public place and see tones of homeless walking amongst the richest of the rich. It seems so wrong, and contridictory. We went down there I gave my testimony to a crowd we gathered, and then we prayed and ate with some of the homeless. That was very amazing, but my week gets even more eye opening.

On wednesday I began minsitry in the morning with a ministry called gifts in Kind, we unpacked boxes of things people donated from beverly hills for foster care here in LA, and the metro kidz ministry (families in the projects). In the afternoon I joined under the bridge ministry - in the mornings they go down to neighbourhoods and tell the people they are handing out food etc in the afternoon. So I joined in the afternoon and we went to Skid Row. If you dont know what Skid Row is, you need too.. its the most eye opening experience I think I will ever have. Its a full block of drug addicts, homeless, pimps, prosititues etc. We stayed in packs dont worry im safe.. I know some of you moms are worried.. espically mine. So we set up inside of a shelter and handed out food sort of like ark aid, but on a larger scale. Some of us talked and prayed with people, some of us served food.

Then Thursday in the morning I served with adopt a block - which is a ministry that goes into the community to serve. In the morning they do pratical things like clean up parks and neighbourhoods, which is what I did. We went and cleaned up a park that was strung with bottles, garbage etc.. In the afternoon I made phone calls for them in the office to remind volunteers to be at adopt a block on satruday. What happens on saturday is volunteers meet in the gym of the dream center, and we have different sites. Then we'll go out to those sites and just spend the day serving, playing with kids, feeding people etc.. then they come back to angeles temple with us for church. i'll tell you how my first adopt a block experience was after. Thursday night I went to church but I went with the bus ministry to skid row, and picked up people. This just rocked me to the core, yes I saw the place days earlier, but just talking with people and praying with them and spending the time to sit with them in church was amazing. - it made me not want to take them back, and as they filed off the bus -some waiting till everyone got off because they didn't want to go back, I thought.. God.. why these people, why do they suffer so much, why can't them climb out of the hole that is life for them and live in victory. I guess everyone of them can with a little love, and help.

I have to tell you family, we have it good -- this life that we live in -with all of the faults and bills we need to pay is not EVEN comparable to the pain some might feel that live in skid row, the abandonment of family members, the anxiety of where food or clothing might come from next. So next time I look at my clothes and think, I have nothing to wear I am going to shake my head and thank God for all he has blessed me with.

So I will give you constant updates via this blog, so you can come and read whenever you want instead of being bombarded by emails from moi.

I love you ALL so very much!!!

PS. My new nickname is "the Canadian", and im grouped in with the foreigners another guy named Jesse, and two girls from from sweden and switzerland Which I find hysterical.
PPS. the reason for this blog is because A/facebook doesn't work during the day and b/ it doesn't work on my computer and I need to get it fixed any soloutions??


SIAFL said...

My Dear Canadian:
It is so good to hear you are doing well. You are so right in that we have so much to be thankful for. Our clothes may not have come from Savo Row yet they are clean and relatively hole free. If I lost twenty pounds they might even fit. Your Uncle Doug has a few questionable items in the closet. You know the kind with more holes than cloth. What man doesn't though? Somehow we never see these items when they are courting us yet after we are married and "In place" these articles suddenly appear as though their existence was never questioned. All kidding aside Jess. I understand poverty first hand, I was born in a third world country and remember all too well the smell of poverty and disease. We are praying for you, that the hand of God will protect you and that your financial needs will be met at this time. We look forward to future updates and look for your safe return to us when the time comes.
Love always
Aunt Trish
Stranger in a Foreign Land

phyll864 said...

Our dear Jess
We are glad you are safe & we know God will keep you that way. Uncle Mike says to say he knows what you are talking about. He spent time in Mexico where a lot of the people on skid row came from. They came to California for a better life & where they are is better than where they came from believe it or not. Some of those people came from a place much worse. In Mexico they shot people for no reason at all. But with much prayer & healing & time we know Jesus can make them whole. We love you & will keep you in our prayers. Hugs & Kisses
Uncle Mike, Aunt Phyll,Jen & Jed

MWLU said...

My Dear and Much Loved Daughter: I am so, so proud of you. I pray for you daily and will continue to lift you up to our father for safe keeping. I want you to have lots of fun and bless lots of people with your kindness and generosity. Miss you much and lots you lots. God bless you alot and keep on keeping on
Love always
Mom who loves U (MWLU)

Corrie said...

What an amazing eye opening experience, you will never be the same, but I believe this is right where God wants you, he has been preparing you for it. We can get so caught up in our lifestyles and what we think we should have that we seem so far off from Gods people who are truly in need. God help us:) You are amazing Jess, stay safe and keep your heart open wide to what God wants you to see and recieve,
Love you, Corrie

Flavia said...

Hey Jess,
Glad to hear that you got there okay. I would love to go on a missions trip someday! I believe it would change my life. We do have it good. And yet we still complain. We really need to be thankful for what we have. You are an amazing person for allowing God to use you in so many different ways to bring people to know him. God will continue to bless you!
Luv ya, Flavia

Twiglesworth said...
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Kelly Franklin said...

Jessie Just..hey the rah rah about truth on the first day, yeah you are speaking my language girl...most folks cant stand the kind of truth it takes to release redemptive revelation into the lives of the broken, and the rest wont take the time to build relationship to earn the right to speak it to them either...lots of folks will have stuff to tell you and think they know what you are going through etc...but dont listen till you see the fruit..keep your head on straight and listen to God's voice Jessica, you know how to do that..balance emotions stay in the word and just do it without worrying..he is your provision toots! like he was for me when I was a single mommos...keep doing both as above speaking truth that brings redemptive revelation even when it's unpopular cause the spiritual climate around you will be rich and have relationship so you can speak and they will listen!!!! much fruit and many aha moments on ya...I know you know what I were born for this Jessica Justrabo..dont get side tracked by those who flounder around you with where they fit pulling you into that with them...feel uncomfortable with status quo and bring it and make a difference...go get em ya to pieces and am praying purity and clarity in your thinking body and ministry and life purpose..the rest God will handle! my testimony so I know it's true yo! gotta be true, HE said praying my butt off for ya! love Kelly