Living Social Justice

A blog about responding to poverty and injustice, everyday and in all sorts of ways

Street and Shelter: Raising the Roof

The worship and prayer meeting at the Wynberg Haven Night Shelter

By Jake Waldron

Once a week a group of us head down to the Wynberg Haven Night Shelter for an hour to hang out with the people there and teach them about Jesus. In our weeks there we’ve made friends with many of the guys and shared in their struggles.

We rotate between Bible study, tough questions, worship, and a quiz night each week, so that we have something prepared. A few weeks ago we brought our guitars for our customary, once-every-four- weeks, worship/prayer session. I always look forward to these weeks, but I’m biased because I get to play guitar and sing.

Jake heading up worship on his guitar

We arrived at the shelter at 6:30 and walked into the communal hall, greeting all the familiar faces and finding out how their weeks had been. After we’d sufficiently greeted everyone, we set up the chairs in a circle and all sat down to enjoy some time with Jesus. We started playing through the songs we had prepared, and as the numbers grew, so did the noise factor.

Eventually, by the third song, people were singing at the top of their lungs, stamping their feet and slapping their chairs in time to the music. I looked around me and saw the joy on everybody’s faces as they were singing their hearts out. It was truly a moment so full of the Holy Spirit, and I felt like Jesus was there singing, stamping, and slapping chairs as well. Eventually, the manager of the shelter has to ask us to start winding down because we had been going for an hour and a half.

One of the following weeks we went back for a Bible study. After the session one of the guys, Mustafa, told us that he wanted to give his life to Jesus. Sam and I prayed for him and you could just see the love that Jesus had for this man.

We are all so honoured to be a part of what God is doing in these people’s lives, and we are so grateful that He’s trusted us with showing them the love that He has for them. It is amazing to see God working in everyone who’s been a part of this, volunteers and shelter residents alike. We are so excited to see Him do more.

– Jake is a video editor and is a member of the Common Ground Rondebosch PM congregation

Do you have a heart for people living on the streets or in a shelter? The Street and Shelter Ministry is a great way to meet people from various walks of life and serve in a team of like-minded (and -hearted!) people. Email info@commongood.org.za to find out more. 

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