This was a great weekend.  I started out the weekend sick but so much good happened that I can hardly believe it.

  • I joined in with our churches detention center ministry
  • I taught children’s ministry on Sunday morning
  • I had a great opportunity to encourage some good friends of mine
  • I was in turn greatly encouraged by these friends
  • I wrapped up Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University and was greatly blessed by it
  • I came to understand biblical stewardship

But there’s one thing I want to talk a bit about and that’s the time I spent at the juvenile detention center.  I was there to share my testimony, which isn’t anything all that spectacular compared to men who had REALLY radical encounters with Christ like the guys from Seventh Day Slumber, but it was a life turn around story so I shared it with the hope that the young people hearing it could take it for it was: a story that basically says “anyone can get their life turned around.”

Didn’t quite turn out that way.  A fight broke out in the middle of my testimony, a Muslim in the audience decided he wanted to make me look like an idiot and spent the entire time asking me if Jesus was a man and the Son of God then why bother following him when we can just follow God?  He kinda shut down when I tried to dive into it a bit and explain the mystery of the dual-nature of Christ and Trinitarian theology.  (Note to self – ministry time is not systematic theology time)

So I’m pretty bummed out as we’re wrapping up and say “if anyone wants prayer before going we’re going to be over here to pray for you all.”  I almost didn’t even say it, one of the team members had to remind me to make the offer.

Six out of the 18 kids who were there asked for prayer.  One of them came up to me personally and said, “I want to turn my life around I just don’t know how, and I’m afraid I’m gonna mess it up.”  I gave him my phone number and said “I don’t know if I’ll be able to help, but if I can’t, I know people who can.” And then I prayed for him.

As I walked out I had to ask myself what exactly did I do that made these kids so eager for prayer.  What did I say that made them want more?  Was it how open I was to Mr. Muslim?  Was it my own story or the way I was just kind of stoic while I waited for the guards to break up the fight?

Duh Sage – I thought – It was the presence of God in that place.

“Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.”