In 1996 when the Olympics came to Atlanta, one of the places that was highlighted by the committee that was giving tourist the best places to go visit in the city was Little Five Points. I guess it was because of it’s eclectic nature and varied street life. In that regard nothing has changed. But in other ways it is probably much darker spiritually than it was. But isn’t everything? Look at TV and the movies, they are both much darker as is every realm of our society. But as the scriptures say in Isaiah; as the darkness gets darker, the light gets lighter. So here we are in 2011 at L5P and sure there is darkness, but the light conquers darkness. When has there ever been a dark room that can stop light from lighting up the area. No amount of darkness can stop even a little light. This year we along with other Christian groups have brought a light into the darkness of Little Five points.
Today I met and talked for a long time to “Digger”. Digger is one of the many homeless veterans in Atlanta. He was in the Vietnam war. We talked at length about some of his experiences there. I look at him and say “there but for the grace of God go I.” He was in Da Nang in 1968-69. He was a member of the 101st airborne division, and was involved in the Tet offensive and Hamburger Hill. He was taken captive and escaped. His experiences are very real, and I honor him for his service. Digger really needs the peace that only God can bring. I talked to him vet to vet. I just listened to him. We got down on our knees with him on the street corner and listened. Then I was able to pray for him. I just prayed that he would find the peace of God. I broke off a spirit of restlessness and abandonment that almost all Vietnam Vets carry. He received it, but he needs so much more. I’m sure I will see him again. I was able to pierce through to the inner part of his being because we had a common bond. Even though I was in the Air Force, I served in Viet Nam. I didn’t see the horrors that he did, but that didn’t matter. Since I had been there, he was open. I could feel the love of God for this man and for all the veterans. Not only those of Viet Nam, but from all the wars before and since.
But let me tell you of another story from L5P. Last year during a time when our group was doing the “spiritual prophetic readings” another veteran came up. I will call him Joe. It’s not his real name, but because so many people might know him, I want to protect him. Joe came to the table and out team ave him a prophetic word, and called out his dreams. They hit it right on, and Joe also told them their dreams. Although Joe didn’t really know the Lord, he was very gifted. Anyway, that started a relationship with some of the team. They saw Joe over the year, and he was hungry for more of the Lord. Joe had been a drug dealer and user. During the past year he came to know the lord. He stopped using drugs and stopped selling them. He began to hang out with us, and began coming to church at Bethel Atlanta every chance he got. Many of our team would drive an hour out of the way to pick him up. Joe had been homeless, but as he got cleaned up, he went to live with his uncle.
Joe began to minister with us in L5P this fall. He was one of our best contacts. He knew the area and the change in his life was evident for all to see, A couple of weeks ago, Joe reenlisted in the service. Not only does he now have a job and a mission, he got a 35000.00 signing bonus for the skills that he has. They say that he will be assigned working with the drug interdiction team. At any rate, Joe has a mission field to share the Kingdom of God. I’ve see Joe, he is the real deal, and I pray that he will be used mightily wherever he goes. That’s tow different testimonies, but I pray that Digger will wind up like Joe. Next week is our last official week of ministering at L5P. I have fallen in love with the place, and I am sure I will return. It’s been a great year and we have seen a lot happen there.
On a personal note, I am much better tonight. The air conditioning is still out, but I am out here on the porch and it is very comfortable. I know that transition brings ups and downs. Yesterday was a down day, but today I am back up. The good news for me is this. Even though it was a down day, God still met me, and He carried me through it. Today I am back in my usual optimistic mood, because He is good and He is in a good mood. I can do all things through Him because He does strengthen me. I just finished eight periods in six days. I have the next two days off. I’m really looking forward to the healing room tomorrow night at school. I know He is going to show up and show off. It’s going to be a good week!