For six day’s Deb and I partnered with “Time To Revive” (TTR) in Apollo Beach, Florida. It was a controlled blur. Everyday a great deal happened, too much to document and share. To paint a tiny picture of how the TTR model plays out, I have three short stories; Blissology, Gibsonton, and The Tower. Blissology was the most fun, Gibsonton the most challenging, and The Tower was personally rewarding.
It’s very simple, the TTR’s process is, “Love, Listen, Discern, and Respond.” Teams go out into a community and exhibit Jesus’ love. There are two engagement sessions each day, morning and afternoon. The engagement sessions are divided into teams of four. The number of teams depends on the number of participants. SeaGlass Church was the host church.
Businesses play a huge role in any community. So it most definitely is with in scope to visit a business, and ask the owner or manager what they would like prayer for. We entered “Blissology.” Oh guys, and I mean “Guys” this was a learning experience. The owner, Sandra, welcomed prayer for her business and employees, and as a bonus I get a crash course on waxing, threading, and eyelash something or other. I crossed the line, a man from Mars on Venus. It was foreign to me. Oh the horrors!!!!! Kidding.
Have you heard of Stevens Johnson Syndrome? As a child, age eight Glen suffered through it due to an inoculation. Attempting to cool his body with wet dishcloths, his mother surely thought baby Glen would die. The skin came off his face when she removed the warm cloth. His body temperature was 109°. Recently Glen had retired, and moved to Gibsonton, interestingly Gibsonton is a Mecca for Circus people.
Glens, “He wouldn’t hurt anyone” Pit Bull, kept Mary and I three feet further away from him than what a fifteen-foot lead allowed. I really wanted to pray for Glen, it took thirty minutes to work our way towards him. I’d ask questions about the neighbor hood, and Glen would point and talk of the sword swallowers, the guy working on the tilt-a-whirl, and the bearded lady. The dog would lunge, bark, and then forget about us. We did lay hands on Glen and prayed for healing in his back, and offered up thanks to God for the peace in Glen’s heart, and his retirement.
Glen was bit gruff, but at the same time mild. My friend Mary is a dwarf. The Pit Bull was half Mary’s height. Glen assured Mary how well she would blend in with the neighborhood.
After each encounter, before heading back to the host church the teams are encouraged to debrief on their experiences. I asked Mary how Glen’s comment made her feel? With out missing a beat, “It didn’t bother me at all, my identity is in Christ.”
It was the last day, on the last outreach team when I was blessed. Our team of four drove to a popular Manatee viewing area, in search for a person of peace. Walking out to a viewing tower we talked amongst ourselves. Mom visited with a church member. I visited with mom’s daughter, she was twelve, and going out on team for the first time.
We talked of the importance of school, favorite subjects, math verses grammar, and I’m not really sure what else we talked about, but the daughter did. When the evening dinner was over mom asked me if I noticed how bummed out her daughter was after our outreach had ended. I explained that we never had kids, and my read on what kids are thinking is very nominal. Mom almost made me cry when she explained how her daughter thought our walking talking visit was, “The best”, and sad when it ended.