Morning devotions and worship lay a strong foundation for the ministry ahead this day
Lots of adventures and divine appointments today in the town of Kenora. Yesterday the team ventured out once, using most of the day preparing the lush and beautiful roses. As the team has virtually moved into town for almost two weeks today was really “Meet The New Neighbors Day.” Here are some visual and textual snapshots of their close encounters:
This Team Member has a disposition that can only be described with one word: Sunny
Sunny: At the Nursing Home I was really impressed with their wanting to keep the native culture available to their residents who were native. They had some posters up for them. I made friends with one little old lady, her name was Joan. She was kind of lost and didn’t know what to do. I helped her sit so she could get her cup of tea. It was nice to be able to pay attention to her. I really liked the joy on the older people’s faces when we would look at them and speak to them. They were just so excited someone was going to talk to them.
Lura: I didn’t have any long encounters today. Not really one-on-one encounters. But I really enjoyed handing out roses with Ammi at the Canadian Tire place. And she just carries herself with such joy and the eagerness with which she would go up to the cars and talk to people was just so much fun to watch. We had several women who were very touched that we would think they were special enough to give them a rose. And they just couldn’t believe we were giving them free. Two of them said, “No one gives anything away for free!” And my reply was, “We do.” And they were delighted.
I had one other encounter at the nursing home. A woman who was a former nurse and was intrigued by my crocheted hat. So she asked if she could look at it closely so she could copy it. Then she just sat and told me many little stories about her life and she thanked us for coming to visit them.
(L-R) Dave, Yara, Sally and Stephanie take a moment in the shade
I had a good encounter with a man at the park who wanted to know why we were giving the roses out. And I told him to remind him that God loves him. And he sat and pondered it for a moment and said, “Oh, I believe in God.” And he read the card. Then he said, “May I have another rose for my son? I am going to give one to my daughter and one to my son, and I am going to tell them what you said about where they came from.” And I thanked him.
We were in the parking lot of Canadian Tire and Ammi and I walk up to a car with a man inside and we asked if he would like a free rose. And his eyes lit up and he said, “Oh yes I would! I am going to take it home to my wife and tell her I bought it for her!” And I said, “Oh! You better be careful. This rose came from God!” He didn’t say anything more.
Sally gets a rare time out from street worship to do some “rosing” herself
Christine: This morning Yara’s verse, Hebrew 12:1-2 talked about how Jesus for the joy set before Him endured the cross. It reminded me of how my mother when she was sick did that foot-washing. But before she did it she was talking about how nervous she was because her bones literally felt like they were on fire. And she was worried about getting on her knees. But she was really excited about it and she wasn’t going to let the pain stop her from doing it. And she very much wanted to model to us what Christ was like. And so it just reminded me of that. I was crying a lot.
Hollywood Dave hears the word “Barbecue” and rushes of to do battle
Dave: We learned of an event and it was called Dustin’s bbq at a local park. So we set off to go give roses. When we arrived there I decided I wanted to give a few roses to the cooks of the event. Drawn by their savory concoctions I wafted up to them and one of the cooks said, “Who are those for?” And I said, “It’s for all of you. It’s a gift!”
All 8 cooks stopped what they were doing, turned and looked at me blankly—like a deer in the headlights and just stared. Then I said, “Silence is golden.” I proceeded to count out roses to give to each one. The lead cook pointed out the mother of the child whose benefit we were attending and asked if she could receive one. So I went over and gave “Dustin’s mom” a rose and told her, “This is something beautiful for someone beautiful. This is a rose of remembrance for you to remember God loves you.” And she said with much appreciation, “Thank you!”
Jurgen passes out roses at Dustin’s Barbecue to surprised guests
At the nursing home I walked into a lady’s room and she was First Nations. I gave her a rose and told her, “This is a rose to remind you that God loves you and God bless you!” She commented, “This rose is real!” And I tried to leave her room twice. And I’m sure she wanted me to leave her room. The third time I got to the threshold of her door and finally decided to obey what I felt the Lord was telling me to do which was to ask her if she needed prayer.
So I motioned to Lura and Yara to wait. And I walked up to her and told her in all my wisdom, “We go to church. Would you like prayer for anything?” And she lovingly said, “No. I’m ok.” And I said, “OK. God bless you!” And then I immediately felt released to leave. I thought it was strange that all of that occurred, but my wife said, it was good because you were obedient.
Ammi is surrounded by love as she extends her hand in the same spirit
Ammi: It was another good day. I continue to be amazed at how God opens me up when I am giving out the roses and I am not afraid to share His love, which is an answer to prayer. One thing that stood out to me today was going to the nursing home. I had the intention of handing out all the roses in my arms, but it turns out I only gave 2-3 of them.
And this was because I went to a visit a native woman in her room who after I gave her the rose grabbed my arm and stopped me from leaving. And she began to tell me about her life and her family. She expressed to me that she was part of one of the residential schools, and that she had a sister living in the nursing home that also was in the residential school. The name of the woman I was talking to was Flora.
I thought her name was a nice resemblance of the rose. She shared with me that she almost died once and I responded to her, “Well, I think it was God who kept you alive and safe for a reason.” And I told her, “You are loved by God and He sees you.”
She got a little teary-eyed and told me that at night she cries by herself. And I told her, “Well, you are not by yourself. God is with you and so are the angels He has protecting you” She referred to one of the eagle posters on her wall and comparing the eagles to angels. She just told me about her grandchildren and family, and I just provided a listening ear. It seemed to touch her that she finally had someone to talk to.
She noticed the camera around my neck. So I explained to her that it takes pictures and I asked her if she wanted a picture with the rose to see what she looked like with one. And I took the picture and she smiled when she saw herself in the camera. I noticed a lot of time had gone by since I was with her. So I told her it was time for me to share other roses. And then she grabbed my hand and looked me right in the eye and held me firmly and said, “Thank you.”
I could see the love in her eyes for just listening to her. I told her I would pray for her. And she smiled and said, “Thank you,” with teary eyes. And it was a blessing to talk to one lady personally.
Stephanie shares God’s love with a man and his daughter
Stephanie: I am trying not to expect anything. Just do it and not think about it. If I think about it I might get a little nervous about it. I wouldn’t do this at home. So it’s just that.
Jurgen: Devotion was great—very encouraging. I was very encouraged this morning, praying and removing stuff from me what was a big burden the last two days about my family situation. I got anxious the last two days in an unhealthy way and Jesus gave me new peace and joy.
Jurgen revels in the morning devotions
It was a delight to get to talk to a man in a truck at Canadian Tire. He shared about his situation, losing his wife about a year ago. He already had a rose in the truck from Stephanie. And I asked him if he read the card. The card reminds me of your wife that passed away because it’s a rose of remembrance. He started to share more—that he has cancer and it has metastasized. It was just a sweet sharing time and I did offer to pray for him, but he declined. It wasn’t a bad thing. He does believe in God. His name was Rene. Please remember him in prayer.
Joan shares a moment with a gentleman in the nursing home
Joan: Today, Susan at the nursing home was sitting alone in her room. Someone had already given her a rose but I was drawn to her. She smiled and I asked her if she would like to hold all of my roses and if I could take her picture.
She was glad to and I helped her to arrange them in her arms.
I took the picture then read her the card attached to her rose. She was moved by this and I could see she was of a tender heart. I asked if she would like me to pray for her. She nodded and with a weak voice and tears flowing said, “yes, I hurt in my heart.”
We held hands …she squeezing mine and I prayed for Father to reveal to her His love and surround her with His awesome presence and peace.
Susan wept freely and the Holy Spirit rested on us. I asked her if she would like to meet Jesus and told her He loved her and cared about her pain.
She wept more saying she did not know where her sons were. We prayed some more about her pain and sons …
The whole time there was peace growing and settling on us.
We prayed some more. She prayed with me … to give her life to Jesus and surrender her hurt…for help to trust him and for comfort. She prayed to released her sons to God to care for them and we asked that they would be moved to come to see her. We prayed for healing of her broken lonely heart and thanked Father for loving and coming to comfort Laura with His presence. We prayed Father would show her how to forgive and to forgive her.
I sang her a song and reassured her that Jesus and the Father were present with her and would not leave. She would never be alone again.
She was still holding my hands. Laura had dried her tears and was now smiling a peaceful smile.
She nodded that she believed.
Reluctantly she let go of my hands and smiled and I could see she was very glad for having met Jesus. She thanked me over and over.
Sally worships as the Lord moves on hearts
SUSAN received one of 2 roses I gave out in the nursing home. It was an honour to meet this First Nation sister and a great joy toy heart.
Always it is my heart that there are so many hurting people. I hear Father say “One at a time Joan.”
Another time today, on the dock at the picnic, Sunny and I met a Father and his two young children. The father amd son recieved willingly with joy and interest but the little boy was reluctant and unimpressed. When I told him God loved him I could almost read his mind.
On the return trip down the dock we spoke again the the father.
He said his daughter was pleased with the rose and he was looking forward to the concert but his 4 year old son had said “I don’t want no stupid pretty thing I want something cool.”
No sooner than he had said this we heard the child’s request was answered. He called out with loud excitement….”A bug!” as he found a bug on the dock. Father is so faithful to hear the heart of even a young, playing child and to express His love in a way that child could accept. Isn’t God wonderful!
A rose for a hug? Yara thinks that’s a great deal!
Yara: Today we got to go to a nursing home that is right across the street from our hotel, which of course made me happy. The residents were very happy to receive the roses. Sally sat down and played worship songs on their piano and you could tell that the residents really enjoyed it. Because if they didn’t like something they would leave. There was a lady I was able to give a rose to there. She was very very happy. She asked where I was from. I told her I was from the States—more specifically Los Angeles and she said, “Oh, But you guys are so polite!” And I said, “Some of us from Los Angeles are nice.” But she was so happy she gave me a hug. She was happy that the rose was a real rose. She said, “It’s real! It’s real!’ She couldn’t believe it. And I told her why we were giving the roses. I told her it was to say that God loves you and we want to bless you. And she just really got it and was very happy and grateful. And she said blessings to us also.
Another Hollywood Dave wannabe . . . They’re starting younger and younger . . .