|Logo for an amazing ministry in Austin|
"He has told you , O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord Require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? -Micah 6:8"
Some of my favorite words in the Bible, one of my favorite camp songs, and now the tag line of a new ministry that I am working with here in Austin named Micah 6.
"The mission of Micah 6 of Austin is to work together to identify and meet the needs of the homeless and the impoverished in the University of Texas campus area."
One service that they have started more recently and I was able to experience is a youth drop in center...
Micah 6 is something that my church works with and is one of it's members that gives money and helps out with all of it's different services. The youth drop in was my first chance to interact with the group and I found myself quite pleased with the results. Some of the young adults put together a meal for the "nutritious early supper" part. We made Sloppy Joes, Caesar salad, mashed potatoes, and fruit salad, with desert being some delicious homemade (from a box) brownies with a scoop of ice cream. Everyone brought something, and some who couldn't just dropped off their part."The center is staffed by several hosts each Sunday, and it offers a safe, comfortable place for homeless youth in Austin to use computers connected with the Internet, visit with each other, play games or engage in arts & crafts, relax and lounge on nice furniture, use the rest rooms, get plenty of ice water & iced tea, get some snacks, and eat a tasty and nutritious early supper."
When we got to the center, we were greeted by the volunteers that supervise from 2-6 and they pointed us to the kitchen. We set up shop and started heating our food back up and cooking our brownies. We were told to glove up and get ready after a vigorous hand-washing (health codes). We all served what we brought, so I was ready to serve up all kinds of fruit cups, which meant I wasn't the most popular person in our assembly line of goods. In my constant state of rejection, with little to do, I was promoted to brownie cutter! Almost everyone wanted a brownie and I was a success story overnight. After a quick run of plates, we set to cleaning up and even quicker than that we were on our way.
What was a flash in my story line for the week, was some of my best time spent and as I walked out I was impacted by what I saw. Backpacks bigger than what I used to hike the Inca Trail and faces so young with a weariness I have only seen in hospice. Yet these kids are very much alive and have no place to call their own. This safe place is a four hour respite from something much bigger going on. They are a commentary of the left behind, but at the same time they show us what the human race is capable of handling. I left last Sunday thinking I could do more, because they could do more. I'll be back at Micah 6 sooner than later, and I can guarantee that, but I also hope to find some more places to volunteer my time and efforts.
Like most ministry opportunities I feel like I received more than I gave.