Today in Kisumu, Kenya, Overlake’s first Drop-In center was launched. It is a ministry designed to serve the street children of that community. It will serve as a safe place for kids who have no place, in Jesus’ name. It will serve food, for kids who have no nourishment, in Jesus’ name. It will be a safe harbor for kids who live in the storm, in Jesus’ name. It will a clear, loving, sober-minded refuge for kids who live under the tyranny of glue-induced haze, of lostness, of depression, in Jesus’ name. But most of all it will serve as a half-way house, preparing those street kids who desire it for adoption into a loving, caring HOME.
Overlake Christian Church is partnering with the local church community in Kisumu, and those dear people are also preparing themselves to open their homes for the adoption of the street kids who are sick of the street. This is an amazing thing. It’s a miracle of God’s love in action.
And here’s one more piece of the miracle: the funds to build, prepare, and launch this Drop-In center were all raised (are you ready for this?) by the Students of Overlake Christian Church. By Junior High and High School students. American students used their spring break to babysit, to mow lawns, to walk dogs, to create and sell jewelry, to host garage sales…they worked diligently…so that they might donate the funds necessary to launch this center. And today that hard work has come to fruition. This is an amazing thing. This is another miracle of God’s love in action.
All of this is under the umbrella of the vision God gave Overlake one year ago. OCC 2012 is a vision that has gripped this local body of followers of Jesus, and it is bringing great joy, even as we labor to fulfill it. God has given us initiatives that fall in with each of our three purposes: Love God, Love People, and Serve the World. The Kisumu Drop-In center is a Serve the World Initiative that focuses on Orphan Care.
Of course, now that the first Drop-In center has launched, we’re already in strategic conversation regarding the next one. And of course, our students are already dreaming about how they will be able to raise the funds for it, too. They’ve seen the miracle of the loaves and fishes firsthand, and they’re hungry for more. I love our students. I love the leaders who are right now on the ground in Kenya, enfleshing a miracle. And I love Jesus, our Lord, who places the lonely into families. I’m thankful to HIM, for the chance to be a part of a church like Overlake!