Okay! So, I am starting a Blog. Why? I am not completely sure yet. However, I am going to jump out there. I've been told by people in the past that I should write. I would always just smile and nod my head in agreement, but never really moved on it. In recent times I have thought about doing short video clips to share ideas, encouragement, and the little wisdom I can offer, but my phone camera is terrible. I thought about buying a camera, but I want the best, and my funds aren't up yet. So, I will write until I can save, and find my voice!
What will I write about? I have no idea right now. Maybe it will be short sermons or Bible study notes, or it could be just basic wisdom and encouragement, or an open diary of some sorts.
So here it goes...
I guess I should introduce myself first. My name is Marvin. I'm 25 years old, often told I look older(probably because of my beard). I currently live in a small town of 19,000 called Newton, where I graduated from Bethel College in 2014. I am originally from Pomona California and graduated from Colony High School in Ontario California. After Graduation I chased my dream of football across the country from California to New Mexico to Alabama back to California then landing in Kansas. Notice how I said "my dream" not necessarily God's will. Although I cannot discount the fact that my chasing football led me to Kansas which is where God wanted me, it wasn't until I laid football down that I discovered God's will (or He revealed his will to me).
So, what was his will?
Right now, I am in the middle of my story so I can not speak to God's complete will for my life. However, I do know the small parts that He has revealed to me. He has given me glimpses of His plan, with no time stamp on the visions. It is very frustrating at times but it’s on a need to know basis.
Here is what I do know…
I am called to the broken and rejected. Not just the rejected, but the ones who would not walk into a church and sit in a pew. Not because they do not desire to, but because society has proved to them that they aren't welcome. These are my people! I often feel more comfortable with the broken and rejected than I do with my "Christian" friends and family. The way I am called to serve them is through my dream, Transformational Residences. Which will provide a safe space for individuals and families from all walks of life to come, live, and be transformed by meeting Jesus!
I currently serve at one of these ministries as a live in resident manager. I have been here since January 2014, I first came on as a business intern from Bethel College and was soon asked to join the staff as a live in Staff member. I went home for the summer and returned that August and began to learn the depth of my calling. My motives were not all pure in accepting the position.
I made the decision based on 1.) Moving off of campus, which saved me almost three thousand dollars. 2.) Free meals. 3.) I could learn the ministry although my plan was to learn and leave. Mainly because I had dreamed about leaving Newton once my plane landed in 2012. Whenever I would get frustrated with the school I would say "after my last final I’m going to be on the first thing smoking out of this town." I had a few friends that would even joke and say I am going to raise my family in this town. I would laugh and then quickly snap back at them.
Then in October of 2014 I gave Penny Dugan a 2-year service commitment. Two months later I completed my last assignment for College and was officially a College graduate on December 16th 2014. Which was the same morning my father died. This was devastating to me.
My father was so many things to me and often my sound board where I would bounce ideas off him. Most of the time, he would not respond just smile and nod his head. Nowadays, when I reflect on those moments, it's almost as if he knew more than I did and what path I would take career/ministry. His passing rocked my journey and I wanted to flee my ministry and join my family down in Tulsa.
Why did I stay?
The last time I spoke to my dad was on the Sunday before he passed. Early that morning I spoke to my mother, because she had been up all night worried and crying. She wasn’t convinced on the idea of her son living with men struggling with addictions, coming out of jail and prison. After the phone call I was tempted to leave the Mission. Then after church with a friend, I went over to my host parents’ house for lunch. Right before I opened the door of the truck to go inside my father called me. I hesitated to answer because I was already late, but I answered anyway. It was a brief conversation. My dad asked me if I thought that I was where God wanted me to be. I quickly answered and yes, and he responded with "Okay don't worry about yo Mamma I got her" I said "okay" and then he said "alright do yo thang homie". I have been trying to do my thang ever since!
After writing this I think I know what this blog will be. I believe this blog will be a collection of stories and lessons I have learned about ministry and life while at the Mission. I look forward to the next time until then…
Do y'all thang homies!!
I am Marvin. The more you read these Blog posts the more you will learn about me. The more I write the more I will discover about myself.