Transforming Life

October 2020 e-news

Every now and then you come across a person who is trying very hard to walk a new path in Christ, but is still so real and honest that the street comes out. Please watch this video of Robin, a friend of ours. She has been coming to SLM for a few years and is continually trying to be a better person.  We truly love her and have loved watching her growth. Please note there is a little bit of rough language in the video, but also remember that we are all God’s children and growing in His love.
Robin is an amazing woman who has experienced a lot in her life and now uses that to help others. She is a big part of the ministry and is being mentored by our female outreach leader, Shawn, who is walking her through ways to be more like Christ and to become a powerful female outreach person for SLM.
Please continue to pray for Robin and folks like her that want to change, grow and be more like what Christ has called us to be.  

Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.
— Proverbs 19:17

Thank you for your interest in SLM,
Pastor David Shearin

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So this month, I wanna talk about my daughter. Her name is Laura, and honestly, she’s the single greatest thing that has ever happened in my life. I know these kinds of statements are kind of expected from parents, but I’m being really serious here. She’s an amazing woman – self-made, razor wit, funny as can be, and our conversations are the stuff of legends. She’s the type of daughter that fathers, like myself, thank God for every single day – more so, because deep down, I know I never deserved the absolute awesomeness she is. I am keenly aware that I hit the Lotto with her.

It wasn’t always like this. When she was born, my brother stole a car to get me up to the hospital she was at in San Fran. That car died four times on our way up there, and somehow I got it to come back three of those times. The fourth, we pushed it into the parking lot and never saw it again. I went running in to see Laura’s mom, and somehow knocked the IV out of her wrist when I went to hug her. I was an absolute mess, but I was there when Laura was born. The nurses scooted her away to clean her up, and came back holding this little bundle. The nurse asked if I wanted to hold my daughter, and I responded with the most honest answer I’ve ever given, before or since – “I’ve been waiting my whole life for this.”

That first time I held her, she looked right into my eyes. I know they say newborn babies can’t really see yet, but I’m convinced she looked right into my soul. She owned me from that moment forward, and I made a whole lot of promises that I never had a chance of keeping. I mean, I was a full-time gangster – what did I know about taking care of a baby? I tried to change, I really did, but it was an awful long time coming.

I’m not going to sit here and tell you I was a good father, because I’ve never for a second thought I was. I was so far out of my depth that I couldn’t tell my rear end from a hole in the ground, but I loved her with all the fire I had inside me – and that was a LOT. The years went by in the blink of an eye, as they do, and Laura was coming up on 18. Her mother and I weren’t really talking much, and honestly, Laura didn’t want much to do with me. I can’t blame her – I was as much a screw-up then as I was when she was born, so why would she? We had stopped talking a while before her birthday and I wasn’t exactly surprised that she moved to Kentucky to get as far away as she could from me and her mom. Truth is, I thought I might never see her again, and it just stoked all the fires of self-hate I already had for myself…

Years passed, and one day I saw that she’d responded to a post my brother had done on Facebook. I decided I was going to put it all out in the open and give it one last shot. Things were changing in my life, and I thought maybe if I could convince her to take one last chance on me.  I could finally show her I meant what I said. Amazingly, she agreed, and I have made it my life’s work to rebuild our relationship and earn back her trust ever since. I feel like I’ve done a pretty good job so far, as has she, and together we have a lot of good times. I feel like she understands where I was at, and I totally get her side, too.

We’re not just father and daughter anymore. We’re friends. There are times she finishes my sentences. We’re just really in sync with each other. Hearing her voice erases all my stress and anger on a bad day. Sometimes, she’s the only person on the planet that can change my mood. After all these years of struggles, I think both of us are finally at the point where we can be ourselves with each other again. We’re right where we’re supposed to be. I love you, Laura.

I almost forgot – I always end this column with a prayer. This month’s prayer is easy. Lord, help me to be the man my daughter sees when she looks up at me and smiles. Guide me to be that man, Lord, because I’m not the only one who needs him. Help me make my daughter proud, Lord, because I can with Your help. Oh, and Father – thanks for the Miracle You gave to me when she was born. She’s the very best part of me.
See you on the streets.

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Street Life Ministries exists to share God's love 
by providing life-giving resources and Christ-centered gatherings to people living on the streets of the Peninsula.

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