Thursday, January 16, 2014
River of Life Family Centre
Well well, I have been struggling to wake up in the morning and been pretty tired! Nonetheless, today had been a great day, helping out at the River of Life Family Centre which caters showers and meals for the homeless people at Chinatown. It looks like a quaint little cafe with very welcoming interior design. We had about 300 homeless people come in for their meals and free showers! Basically we help out with the cleaning of the tables and the place! It's so encouraging to hear stories from the people there! One guy told me that he became homeless because of himself. He was once married and he did something that caused his wife leaving him. They got a divorce and he lost his job and had given most of his 'fortune' to his wife. When speaking to the owner of the centre, he shared heaps of stories! His aim is to feed the homeless so that they don't starve and think of doing irrational ways to get food which may involve stealing..robbery. So, the centre aims to decrease the crime rates of the area as well. One day he say a man pacing back and forth outside the door looking intently at the centre. He invited the man to come in and fed him. He was so thankful and admitted that he was about to rob the place! And, initially, the business people around Chinatown hated the centre as they accused it of bringing useless people and crimes to the area. After many years of noticing the positive changes, some of the business people are starting to support the centre. Before we left, we talked to a guy who used to be the 'gangster' of the area. He used to chase people down the streets with a hammer besides selling drugs and meth! One day the owner talked to him and invited him to the centre and he agreed to go through the rehab programmed offered there. Now, he's working at the centre. So some of my team mates and I will be volunteering at the centre every Wednesday for 3 months! It is a good experience as it challenged me to still love, honour and not judge them. Yes some may be stuck in the state of being homeless and not wanting to do anything about it and some got to that state as a consequence of their choices. Whatever it is, every human is precious to God and we have no right to judge and treat them any different. Also, everyone has their own journey to go through and none of us are better than the other. What we can do is do our best in little things everyday such as showing kindness and grace, listening to people, respect people and loving people. And it is a challenge and I know I can't do it without seeking God and be guided by Him. Zzzz....going off to sleep now!!