SERVING IN BALTIMORE: DAY 2

The Church at LifePark is partnered with The Church of the Harbor to spread the gospel in the largely unchurched community of Essex, Maryland. The mission trip is both challenging and life-changing. The Church of the Harbor consistently serves their neighbors through mission projects, feeding hungry and inviting people to church.

LifePark members Matt Pinto, Marianne Caldwell, Jeff Schrupp and Roanna Miller are serving on the latest mission trip. Matt Pinto sent us this update from Day 2 of the Spring 2019 mission trip to Baltimore:

This morning I went for a short morning jog through the streets of Essex.  I weaved in and out of the streets between the church and the Black River to the West.  Like Roanna, this area takes on the appearance of my blue collar childhood neighborhood; humble single family homes with occasional sprinklings of row homes, old 1980s vehicles parked in the streets, and chain link fences. 

When I returned I made a pot of coffee (delicious Hawaiian blend), had a little quiet time with God, contemplated yesterday’s door to door efforts, and gathered with the team for a short devotional in which Jeff led us through the book of Haggai; “Because of my house, which remains in ruin, while each of you is busy with his own house.”

Following a debrief of yesterday’s activities, our team was back to the streets for approximately five hours of door to door evangelism, including a short rain delay and lunch break.  We had great success this go around; a few full gospel presentations, many positive faithful conversations, and zero doors slammed in our faces.

 

 

Two conversations I had with the folks of Essex today are highlighted below:

    1. Stash is a young man recently released from prison.  He was very receptive to my invitation to Saturday’s free picnic at the church.  He explained that as his neighborhood continued to go downhill he got wrapped up in the wrong activities as a young man.  While in prison Stash attended worship services where he learned about Christ.  I am unsure if he has ever accepted Jesus as his savior, but he nodded and agreed when I explained that we are all sinners and that Jesus is our only hope at reconciliation with God.  I told Stash that he is a testament to God’s grace.  I further explained that the youth of Essex could benefit from his testimony and that the church is the perfect venue for this type of thing.  I hope to see Stash at tomorrow’s picnic.
    2. Richard has been off pills for one year; a recent addict.  He stood at the door while his middle school aged boy peaked out to see who his dad was speaking with.  Richard explained that he grew up in Essex, watched it degrade as the years passed, and fell into its temptations at an early age.  He agreed with me as I suggested that positive neighborhood gatherings, like Saturday’s free picnic at the church, are a way to improve the overall character of the neighborhood.  Although the conversation never became solely Biblical in nature, Richard knew I was there to preach the Gospel based on the church invitation.  Maybe tomorrow’s picnic will present the opportunity to “speak some Jesus” to Richard.

**Please pray for these men and their families.

For more information on our regional partnership with the Church of the Harbor, visit us at churchatlifepark.org/baltimore.

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