As the rain drops plaster my windshield, I question whether it’s a good night to visit the homeless camps. Most the camps are unsheltered and when it rains, the mud makes everything look like a bog. But I ignore my thoughts and continue, hoping the rain stops soon. I keep going, undeterred by the thick […]

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Where have I been for the last two months? Good question. Just before Christmas, God asked me to stop doing outreach and stop blogging. He simply said, “Wait.” I resisted at first, hoping that maybe I’d heard wrong. But as I prayed about it, He kept confirming the message. So I waited. I filled my […]

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The fire is mesmerizing. The flames dance, spitting small sparks that float up and then disappear. It’s beginning to get dark, but the sky still holds one last gasp of daylight. The fire feels comforting and ancient. This is how people have lived for centuries. Simple. Rich pokes at the fire, keeping the smoke down […]

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It’s one of those nights where I’d prefer to stay home, nestled in a book and a blanket. Rain droplets spritz from the sky and the fog makes the night look like clam chowder. I’m standing inside an empty storefront near the Gainesville square. There’s twenty people here. Pat’s strumming his guitar. We’re worshipping. It’s […]

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Jeffrey is this exuberant black guy with a chuckle and smile that are positively endearing. He’s animated but authentic with a thick Southern accent that’s sticky like molasses. Before landing at Set Free, Jeffrey went through hell. His road ended under the Queen City Parkway Bridge. He begins to brush in the details.  I’m spellbound. “You know I […]

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Doubt and confusion have plagued me for several weeks now. I’ve been struggling to hear from God, wondering if I just imagine His voice. I have moments of such brilliant clarity and His voice echoes through my heart like an alarm clock. And other times it’s as if I’m drowning in a dense fog. Just a few […]

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Two weeks ago I spoke to fifty recovering addicts at Set Free. Afterward, one of them approached me. The man said, “Your story really made an impact on me.” He looked worn ragged, shaky like a deer in headlights. I shook his hand, thanked him, and asked his name. “Pete,” he replied. Our encounter was […]

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My hands tremble as I walk up to the pulpit. I’m supposed to give a message to these fifty former addicts at Set Free, but my mind is blank. I don’t have words. I open my mouth to pray, “God, I love you. Please give me the words…” For two weeks I’d been sweating this out. […]

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It’s six am. Headlights whizz past my window in the dead dark of morning. A single incandescent bulb illuminates my living room. It’s quiet. I sit on the couch praying. This early hour is the foundation of everything I do. I pray and listen. The word “Tire Barn” sticks in my spirit. I don’t completely understand, […]

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It’s a grey day, overcast and gloomy. Randy’s just finished eating breakfast when I ask him to talk. Last week I gave him a ride home, but I know almost nothing about his life. We sit down on the curb and Randy unravels his story. “I was homeless for a couple years, but I’m not homeless […]

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