Beautiful Sunset close to my house
Family & Friends,
Greetings from Sheffield, England where the weather has been cool, the church family have been so wonderful, and the food is better than expected. The transition here has been a little more different than expected, but God is providing for the needs that we have.
The first of the many things to share is what happened at the border. We were at the border line trying to get our passports stamped so that we could come into the country and the lady who was dealing with me was horrendous. She was insulting my intelligence, extremely rude, and eventually handed me back my passport and papers and said “I don’t want to talk to you. I am not letting you in the country.” Pause in your head for just a moment to think about how awful it would have been to get on a plane for 8 to 9 hours & then get to the border for them to tell you that you can’t come in. Now, I am not sure if this has ever happened to you before and if you know me you know I can be emotional, but THANK YOU LORD and HOLY SPIRIT I didn’t react to what this lady had said or done. I took my passport and papers and went back to the front of the line to be directed to another border associate. I then went to the border associate who my team leader Steven had been allowed in. She asked me questions like how long are you staying, how much money do you have, what are you going to be doing, where are you going, etc. She stamped my passport and said I was free to enter the country. I literally passed the bolded red line and entered into the United Kingdom. I wanted to cry in that moment, but I couldn’t because there were so many people around. So, why were they acting like this at the border? The reason is because earlier this year that department had some executive fired for allowing too many people into the country and especially with the Olympics. Some athletes have taken asylum in the country- they still haven’t gone back to their home country.
It was literally another Red Sea Moment. God parted the Red Sea to allow the Israelites to escape the Egyptians. I needed to get into the country and there was no way (it seemed) I was getting in. I know that God wants me here in Sheffield, UK because I could have easily had my passport “red zoned” which means my passport would be red when they scanned it. I then would be put in an holding cell for up to 4 hours, and then more than likely would have been sent home. God wants me here in the Sheffield. God wants me here at ACC: Sheffield. God wants me working with Acts of Mercy:SnowDrop Project.
These are gold posts for the Olympians from Sheffield who got a gold medal!
I am living with a young professional who is from the church. I live about a 40 minute Tram ride away from where the church is, but it also takes me 12 mins to walk to the tram stop and another 12 mins to get from the tram stop in town to church. Traveling time has become my new time to read. I now appreciate having a car and being able to go and do whatever I wanted/when I wanted.
We are also transitioning into how to do laundry. There are washers, but no dryers and many days it will rain at some point, so having an outside line isn’t really the best idea. We are so grateful for chairs and furniture to hang our clothes to dry!
The church family here is great. Antioch Community Church: Sheffield (ACC: Sheffield) is a wonderful church. The location of the church is a few blocks away from a large immigrant population, which makes it great for connecting to people. The church doesn’t start until Sunday at 4 pm and goes until 6PM (which EST 10AM). Then everyone goes to the pub after church. The pub isn’t like the bars in the states. There is a bar in the restaurant, but it is more like the feel of a chili’s than an actual “bar”.
Park close to my house.
I am doing Acts of Mercy, specifically working with the snow drop project. The snow drop project is where after the women are out of the 45 day government program, snowdrop will come along and help them find housing, etc. This past week we helped this woman clean up her apartment. It was a government issued apartment. It was dirty and honestly, I can’t believe this is “suitable” housing. We steamed the walls to pull off the wall paper, put putty in the holes in the walls, washed and painted the walls after they were dry. The transformation just in the walls is changing the place immensely. It is amazing to be there and help her out. (of course for security reason I can’t share any specific information about her- we aren’t even given a ton of information). It is so interesting to be there and know we are helping her but also knowing that the true healer really wants to do the same thing to her soul and spirit. That transformation will not just change for the moment but will last for an eternity.
I am getting my first newsletter ready to send out to every one, which will have some similar things on it, but I know how my followers on the blog really wanted to be updated.
Please pray for me. I am growing a lot and God is giving us a lot of grace. Pray for Sheffield and the people we interact with for discipleship relationships. Pray for my bosses Tim and Lara- they work for Acts of Mercy and SnowDrop Project. Pray for ACC: Sheffield. Pray for my team.
Until next time,