A year to change a lifetime
by Joe Noland, Commissioner –
At this writing Revolution Hawaii is well into its, “A Year to Change a Lifetime!”
The team is made up of seven warriors representing five divisions, ages 18-27. Under the leadership of Rob and Dee Noland, all are immersed daily in prayer, Bible study/memorization and teaching with special guest lecturers, followed by practical application (aggressive evangelism) in their selected mission field assignments throughout the island.
In addition, together, they explore and minister in areas where tourists (and many locals) fear to tread. For example, the team went homeless for a week. With two small tents, little clothing and no money to speak of, they took up residence in a homeless camp on the west side of Oahu.
On Saturday evenings, their mission field is Chinatown, a dark crevice in paradise, where drug dealers and prostitutes peddle their wares and that many of the “down-and-out” call home. The following is an excerpt from a team member’s blog. It can be found in its entirety, along with others, at www.revolutionhawaii.com.
Tom was hard to find; he always is. But we found him in rugged downtown Chinatown. Three of us stand casting shadows onto his hung over body sprawled out the length of the bus stop bench. I kneel, prepared to make eye contact with a man who definitely doesn’t want to wake up. Last night he was drunk, as always, and that probably kept him up all night. Still, I promised him this would happen. And I know he will love me in the end. So I nudge him once, twice, thrice. Finally, his eyes crack open and pretend to see the light for the first time in forever…he sees me—finally.
“Tom, you remember what I told you last night?”
“It’s you!” He sits up, using every last inch of energy.
“We brought you a bag of goodies.” As I unzip the bag, I show him every item, from the first-aid kit to the Bible, to the soap and socks.
Tom cries. He always cries, drunk or not. “You brought this here? I needed a bag and socks…”
Blake hands him the red blanket. I give a hug and before you know it, Tom places the bag to his right with the blanket on top and crashes into it, asleep again. The ongoing effort to help him for a moment seems pointless, considering he’ll probably lose the bag or it’ll be stolen. And who wants to carry around a bright red blanket in the hardest area of the island? But I’m quick to reflect on the many times he’s cried and hugged me tight. What a good guy—spoiled by society and by alcohol.
Rob reports, “We have already experienced victory as one of the friends we have made is now off the streets and into a clean and sober house. He credits our ministry for this. We credit God.”
Revolution Hawaii has now added a short-term, thee-month mission opportunity into its mix called Revolution Micronesia. If you are interested in giving “three months to change a lifetime,” check it out. The next session begins February 1, 2008 with one applicant all ready to go. Or begin making plans for the next full session, commencing September 1, 2008. More information can be found at www.revolutionhawaii.com and/or by checking with your divisional youth secretary.