At the Pacific garden mission, before we do stages, all the guys gather in a small room across the hall first. We sit around the room in chairs talking, getting to know guys we might have met yet, then when everyone is there we pray in. To tell you the truth, I found it intimidating to pray out loud like that. We start with the guy nearest the door and work our way around till all have prayed. Trying to pray about things that the other guys haven't already mentioned isn't always easy. I look back on my day and find the lessons that God is teaching me and basically shared that with the guys. It has helped me in other ways, like learning about what the other guys pray for that I might not have thought of. Pastor Bower once told us that he never prays for himself, which made me pause. I do pray for others, but it's often self-centered, I admit. Some of the most Biblically knowledgeable guys are also the quietest prayers, I wonder if it's the humbleness? Before Praise and testimony on Saturdays we do pray in's also but it is more free form in who does it. It's always interesting to see who lights it up, especially when the newer guys take up the torch, but we are lucky to get more than 15 different guys to do it. Stage fright?
On the third floor where the program men stay, there is a TV room/ game room right next to the workout room. One of the games is a Foosball table. I saw those tables all the time growing up and even knew some guys that had them in their apartments, but I never got good at them at all. When I first saw this one I figured I have about a year to practice every day, I'm going to learn how to play. I'd watch the guys that where good at it to pick up the techniques and then to get trounced by them regularly. I saw how the better guys wouldn't grab the control rods, but would put their palms flat vertically, finger tips just touching, and roll the rod with the hand in a downward motion to slam the ball down court. It took me months, playing just a half hour each night, but I got decent at it. That game was a good way to get to know guys that maybe you'd never cross paths with that much.
One of those guys is Terrance, who works in office C. There came a day when I heard that his grandmother had passed away, and as much as we believe we will see them again, the human side of us takes a hit knowing we won't hear their voice again for a very long time. By this time I had down 8 of those red pen crosses and had just got done with one I was going to keep, but then the Spirit moved me. I walked over by his bunk and saw him laying in the fetal position, his eyes staring off into the distance and I didn't know what to say. So, I just set the Cross on the bed in front of him and walked away. I could see his eyes lock onto the red lines and today he thanked me for it. I thank the Lord that I had something to give. None of us have much here... my art is all I am really good at anyways. I've always like Terrance, he is level headed, quiet and reserved plus he doesn't always suspect what other people are doing is wrong.