In the first week of orientation after I started working here at the mission I was told that it was my job to become a missionary to the homeless. I thought that this was very interesting because at the time I was preparing to become a missionary to Africa. It can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking that missions is something that only takes place overseas, but the truth is that it takes place everywhere – including your hometown. It seems that God has used the Open Door Mission to help teach me what being a missionary is all about.
I’ve learned here that being a missionary is about seeing lives transformed by God. I love working here at the mission because they understand that this life transformation is a process that only begins when people are shown the love of God. Unfortunately, loving others can be a hard thing sometimes… One of my coworkers today said something today which perfectly described it: When seeing someone who is broken and lost, wading through the muck of life, love doesn’t just yell down directions on how to get out. Love gets down into the thick of it and walks alongside of them, helping them do what needs to be done to get free.
Transformation can be a very slow process at times. Thanks be to God that he is willing to get down into the mess of our lives and walk alongside of us while we stumble around, searching for freedom from the mire!
Garland Thompson Men’s Center