The Man Under the Bridge

Last week a group of people from our church took a trip to the Los Angeles Dream Center.

Founded in 1994, The Dream Center is a volunteer driven organization that finds and fills the needs of over 80,000 individuals and families each month.

Their men’s and women’s discipleship programs offer a free opportunity for people to get clean and sober. Participants live on site at the former Queen of Angels hospital near Echo Park and serve in various capacities as they relearn what it means to be human again.

They also provide housing for emancipated youth, victims of sex trafficking and for families with nowhere else to stay.

Our team from NWLife served for a week with the Dream Center crew and had the opportunity to work with them as they loved, fed, and ministered to their city.

We loaded food trucks, distributed food in neighborhoods, cleaned dirty streets, and served hot dogs on skid row (a five block area of downtown LA where 5,000+ sleep each night).

I’ve been to the Dream Center many times over the last 12 years and every time I walk away inspired to love people in practical and meaningful ways.

underOn our last day at the Dream Center our team had the opportunity to clean the streets surrounding the Dream Center. As we walked through the disheveled city blocks we met a man who moved to Los Angeles from Wichita, KS named Bill.

Bill lives under a bridge a couple blocks from the Dream Center. The area where he slept was neat and tidy, but there was a lot of trash nearby that needed to be cleaned. He was excited when we offered to do it for him. He even loaned us his broom to help out.

Bill gives a name and face to homelessness. He’s more than a number. He’s more than another statistic. Bill matters to God. Jesus gave his life for him and loves him dearly.

It was an honor and privilege to serve Bill. We got to be “Jesus with skin on” and show Bill that love.

Hey, next time we go to the Dream Center, you should totally come.

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