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“Are We Really Who We Say We Are?”


It was a typical night on the streets of Lansing. As the bars began to open and the nightlife found its pulse again, the little storefront building, which held The Lansing Street Ministry – The Harvest House, was just beginning its evening ministry.


The volunteers were getting ready to walk the streets as they had done many times, befriending prostitutes and drug dealers and people who found themselves without a home. This night, however, a new face was walking the streets, and a couple volunteers went to meet this person.


However, once she found out that these people were not paying customers but street ministers, she shrugged them off and said that she didn’t need any help. She was just downtown for the night to make some quick money. She had no intentions of staying any longer than she had too.


So the volunteers went on about their way, checking in with everyone they knew, as they walked the streets. And about 1 a.m., when the small, storefront, office was ready to be locked up for the night, the young lady, that seemed to have it all together only hours before, was now stumbling down Michigan Avenue, just blocks from the Capitol, with a posse of so-called, “managers” coming upon her to pick her up and made her theirs.


Dad was there. And with a couple of volunteers, they ran out and positioned themselves between these managers and one very scared, very confused, very hurt, young lady. Amidst the manager’s taunting, insults, threats, and profanities, Dad guided this young lady’s head so that he stared straight into her bloodshot, drug-induced, tear-filled eyes and told the woman that they were the same people that wanted to help her earlier.


She looked up, and in her all confusion, in all of her pain, in all of her despair and humiliation, she came to one question, “Are you really who you say you are?” Choking back his own emotions, Dad replied, “We are…and we can help.”

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