International Ministries


June 14, 2010 Journal
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Heidel Baby

                A raggedy Pink baby doll was handed to us at lunch today. Matthew 11:28 was handwritten in sharpie on the front and on the back it read Heidelberg. There were many polka dots all different colors some blue, yellow, green, red and purple. It was a creepy little baby the eyes were too bright and glassy. When you moved it front to back its eyes blinked. I got up and found my Bible as i walked back to the team I flipped the pages.  And I read out loud...

                "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."

We all exchanged questioning looks. " A program for single mom's?" Kim suggested. Ivan and Dexter seemed to be thinking.

                "What about some kind of pregnancy program because it's a baby doll and the verse talks about labor." I tossed out on the table.

                We didn't have a clue but made our way to the "Xtreme Van" and rode off. Dan, who is leading our orientation, was giving us yet another informative tour of Detroit. It's such a sad place but there are good things going on rising from the rubble. So many old factories and houses are abandoned or just falling in on them selves in parts of the city. It makes you Xamine what a state that people are in because of the economy. Others may try to hide it and not talk about it. But you can't fool your eyes. Because what made Detroit thrive doesn't seem to be there anymore. We weren't even close in guessing our X-file.

You would think that being an Artist I would have picked up on this. It turns out that our X-file was for the Heidelberg Project. Imagine if you will not just a house but a full neighborhood filled with found art, piles of shoes, Stuffed animals hanging from trees. With the occasional occupied house in the middle of all these outdoors installations, and political statements. But a few of the houses were abandoned and painted with polka dots. There where words everywhere like God, YHWH, taxi and the like.  There were these Santa figures with prayers written on them, things that would make you laugh and break your heart. I kept thinking how cool that was. In the Narnia series Father Christmas is the stand in for the Holy Spirit who gives us gifts and comes along side to help us. But that's my perspective.

Its a lot to take in walking into a living art piece. Scott our Xcitem gave Kim and I his wicked Xpensive cameras. That's like Van Gogh saying " Oh, I'll take a brake and let this art school student take my paint brushes and let them work on the starry night for a while!" I was very honored because I took a few photo classes at my art school but am not a master by any means.

Dan called us all together to talk about what started the project. He told us that Matthew 11:28 was sort of the spark that got this whole thing going. The Heidelberg project was a response to the community which had been broken and the relationships stopped and no one was talking to each other. It was also a way to show how the people of the community felt broken and perhaps like trash. This project got them talking again.  God was everywhere in the mist of the conflicts and issues that eat at us all. I was walking back one the cross painted side walk and large smiling faces and I noticed a white box. And in black was a simple phrase. "Meet me half way." And I thought Yes! There is a reason for us to be here. To work with God half way in things. He doesn't need us but the fact he involves us in his world is just perfect.

So, Here I am with my team. We are going across the ocean to help meet God half way. We were all pulled or called for different reasons but called by God all the same. To have a relationship with him and with his creations.