Imagine if you will, walls with mortar that seems cracked and faded, paint that has been around since the 80's and kids that walk in straight lines dressed in colors that represent their ages. Hard to imagine? It probably is, except now, at least for Agape they see the first hand the faces that go with this place.
Looking out from the stage in a rec room to a sea of faces that have hurt, that have been back in this place more times then they can count, we see the need for Jesus in their lives. How do you spread the love of Christ to these kids? How??? One word at a time, one song at a time, one deliberate loving action at a time.
For some, that was their first encounter with Juveniles at a detention facility, for some like Neva, she has seen far too many of these kids over her 25 year run with Agape; but her heart still breaks for these kids. At Riverside Juvenile Hall, we were not permitted to talk with with these kids directly, so the songs we sang, the intros that were given had to explain who Jesus is, and how He can save them.
After the concert, one of our girls comes back to the sponsors, eyes red and tears streaming down her face – you can't miss it – she was affected by what took place on a Saturday morning in a little recreation room.
We sang to kids that were kept inside by physical walls, and its probably safe to say they have walls up on the inside that need to come down, but why do we stop there. Looking back over the weekend, it is a weekend of service – we are challenged, broken, endure lack of sleep, but in the end we go home to families who love us, warm houses, and cars — these kids go back to the street, to homes without fathers, to families who don't want them. How are we the light to these kids? We show up, and love on them as best we can, and give God a whole lot of room to work.
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