Phone: (360) 571-3300 | 12201 N.E. 72nd Avenue, Vancouver, Washington 98686-2402 (directions) | Service Times: 8:00am, 9:30am, 11:00am
This summer I had the eye openning opportunity to participate, with other members of the Calling, in serving the youth at Open House Ministries.
Open House Ministries (OHM), is an organization that takes in homeless families and helps them get back on their feet. They support them with a place to live, as well as numerous resources to meet their immediate and forseeable needs.
The week was filled with a roller coaster of emotions. I came in with apprehensions of wether or not I could relate to the students, in addition I was unsure how much participation we would get from them. These apprehensions and worries were immediately squashed, the kids came in with so much enthusiasm and energy. I had so much fun living life with them for the week!
The week set up was pretty uniform throughout. The days were filled with relaxed hangout times at the basketball court, slideshows of the day before, and bible studies. Everyday we ate lunch together, and were able to serve one another through that. One of our focuses was to teach the kids the basics of rock climbing, and through that we were able to take them to the YMCA for climbing, as well as to Ozone (an epic climbing spot in the gorge).
Our week goal was to show the youth at OHM the crazy love that Christ has shown us. Throughout the week I saw changes in the attitudes in the students, changes in how they interacted with eachother and us, and I noticed changes in how they were responding in the Bible Studiesl. This can only be attributed to work of God in their hearts.
This week was an amazing experience for not only myself, but for my fellow brothers and sisters in the calling. Service was a huge part of Jesus' ministry, and we are to be imitators of Him. I would encourage whoever is reading this to not sidestep opportunities to serve, rather run to them with the crazy love that Jesus showed us.