Ever since I started volunteering with Alabaster Jar I have been frustrated with the fact that over half of the women we meet on the street do not understand German. It is so difficult to communicate with them. I have contemplated learning another language and have looked into courses but at the moment polishing up my German is very much my priority. Once I have that down I will probably start learning a third language… the question is which one?Languages are unique and beautiful but they create so many communication problems!
Because of this communication issue one of the main things that we do is hand out christian literature to the women along with a small flyer with our phone number and information in their language about who we are and what we offer. We offer them practical help but we really believe that only God can bring these women the hope that they need. He has the power to change their lives around.
These last two weeks have been really special because the women are asking for bibles! In February we got a book that had Jesus on the front and we offered it to many of the women and they looked at it and said ah, “Jesus is on the front, the book is Christian.” ” I’m not interested”. So to see such a drastic change on the street is such an answer to prayer. This last week we gave out 5 bibles and the week before 8! One of the women was so happy she started to cry and said she was going to read it with her husband at home. We talked to her again and she said they have been reading it together and she doesn’t want to read anything else but the bible. We pray that God will use his word to speak into their lives and change them!
ENGLISH VERSION BELOW
Es ist schon eine lange Zeit her, dass wir euch ein Update geschickt haben. Uns ist klar geworden, dass wir euch niemals über unsere Zeit nach JMEM geschrieben haben.
Viele von euch wissen, dass Shay immer noch mit Alabstar Jar zusammenarbeitet und es ihr immer noch viel Freude bereitet. Die Arbeit ist nicht einfach, aber Shay hat eine Liebe in sich für diese Mädels, die nicht von dieser Welt ist. Von Zeit zu Zeit findet ihr die Updates auf unseren Blog (jetzt leider nur noch auf Englisch). Erst vor ein paar Tagen hat Shalyn wieder einen Beitrag geschrieben! Wenn ihr es noch nicht gelesen habt, solltet ihr auf jeden Fall einen Blick drauf werden!
Shay hält euch also auf dem Laufenden, aber was ist mit mir (Michael)?
Wir die meisten von euch wissen, haben wir JMEM verlassen haben, da wir unsere Kosten nicht mehr decken konnten. Ich habe einen Job als Promoter angefangen, was aber leider nicht genug Geld eingebracht hat. Ich habe dann ziemlich schnell zu meinem jetzigen Arbeitsplatz gewechselt, Nachtschicht schieben in einem Hotel. Durch diese Arbeit und ein paar großzügige Spenden konnten wir unsere Schulden fast komplett abbezahlen.
Während dieser Zeit habe ich mein Studium wieder aufgenommen. Dieses musste ich während unserer Zeit bei YWAM unterbrechen. Ich studiere Internationale Unternehmenskommunikation in einem Fernstudium. An vielen Wochenenden muss ich für meine Prüfungen und Seminare in verschiedene Städte fahren.
Ich habe einen Blog ins Leben gerufen und schreibe dort regelmäßig über Kommunikation in verschiedenen Bereichen. Ich hoffe, dass ich es eines Tages mit meinem Studium verbinden und in ein Unternehmen umwandeln kann. Ich habe eine Seite auf facebook eingerichtet und ich würde mich freuen, wenn ihr auf den „Mögen“ Button klickt, da ich die Seite bekannter machen will.
Ich hoffe, euch geht es gut und ich würde mich freuen, von euch zu hören.
It’s been a long time since we wrote you guys and we realized that we never told you what happened to us after we left YWAM.
Most of you probably know that Shay still works with Alabstar Jar and still loves it. The work is not always easy but Shay has a love for those girls that is not from this world. From time to time you can find Updates on our blog. Just a couple days ago Shalyn wrote another post! If you haven’t read it yet you should definitely take a look at it!
So Shay keeps you up dated but what is going on with me (Michael)?
You all know that we left YWAM because we couldn’t cover our costs anymore and went into debt. I took a job as a promoter which unfortunately didn’t make us enough money. I than switched relatively soon to my next job, which is doing the graveyard shift at a hotel reception. Through this work and a couple of generous gifts we were able to almost pay off our debt completely.
During this time I also picked up my studies again. It was something I had to put on hold because of YWAM. I’m still studying International Business Communication as a correspondence course. Many of my weekends are taken up with traveling to different cities in order to take the tests and the seminars.
I started a blog and I post regularly articles about all forms of communication. It is mostly in German and I’m hoping to combine it with my studies one day and turn it into a business. You can check out my facebook page and it would be great if you would click on the like-button as I’m trying to make known.
I hope you guys are all doing well and I would love to hear from you.
Amazing how quickly time passes! The summer has gone by and October is nearly upon us. With that comes the determination to be a little bit more regular posting on the blog. When one has a blog one should post. 🙂
It has been a good summer! I am still working and volunteering with Alabaster Jar and loving it! Michael is working nights at a hotel, reception. We joke between us that we are the perfect combination of working and ministry. 🙂 It has been sad that Michael can’t be as involved as he was, but we know that the job that he has now has definitely been given to him by God. It is so interesting how we as humans think that we know something and then, nope, we didn’t have the full picture.
Stepping out of YWAM has given me the opportunity to work/volunteer fully with Alabaster Jar and to pour myself into this ministry. I am the outreach coordinator, which basically means that I am in charge of planning, arranging, and buying everything we need for outreach, plus all the extras. 🙂 I enjoy it but what my passion really is, is the outreaches!
A bit about outreach: At the beginning of the summer we were discussing on our outreach evening if our work here is effective? The major question was, “If we would leave would anyone notice that we are gone”? Since this conversation we have seen a definite change in our outreaches. We have deep conversations with the women and are many times able to pray with them and invite them to church. There has been a lot of interest in changing jobs and we are just praying that they will be motivated to take the first step. We feel really encouraged that God is moving and we are being used by him! Many times when we experience break through in a certain area we are attacked in a different area, as a team we can see that we need to pray more and be more on alert.
Our team is a very international team and in the team there are several who speak other languages, particularly Spanish. About 2 months ago a new group of women came onto the street from Romania and as we don’t speak their language we gave them books and offered them help if they needed it. Come to find out that most of them speak Spanish! For us this has been huge because we can communicate to these Romanians in Spanish!
The other thing that we have noticed is a huge turn over of Women. I think back to last winter and there are many women that are not here anymore. Our time to share Jesus with them is so short. I have a new boldness to ask them if they want a book and to pray with them. It might be the only time someone tells them about God. Wouldn’t that be like God to bring them into Berlin so that they would meet us and we would tell them about Him!
I am really excited as we have started to talk about going into brothels, unfortunately because of people’s schedules we haven’t yet. I think this will be powerful and we are really praying for God’s favor with the brothel owners and the women working there.
Sorry we haven’t posted for a while. Things have been rather crazy in the last months. We have had a major shift in our lives since leaving YWAM. Michael is now working at the reception in a hotel “Nightshift”. He volunteers when he can with Alabaster Jar and is waiting for his work schedule to settle in a bit before he gets involved in other ministries again. I (Shalyn) am now the outreach coordinator of Alabaster Jar. I am doing office work 10-12 hours every week and then the outreaches. I am now involved in the cafe on Thursday afternoons as well as the Wednesday and Friday evening outreach. We are still praying for someone who wants to go with me into the brothels(at the moment there might be someone new coming who is interested) and hopefully that will start soon.
In the last weeks there has been a lot of break through on the street and we have been able to pray with several girls and talk with them on a deeper level. We are slowly winning their trust! A couple of weeks ago Michael was able to use his Czech to talk to some of the women who don’t speak German. They were so excited that he speaks Czech and he was able to talk with them for a long time. Building relationships is such a key in what we are doing.
Tonight we are doing an Easter outreach to the ladies on K-Str. We are going to be handing out easter cards, chocolate, and showing and easter movie in the cafe. It is a great opportunity to share the love of God! On Friday night we will do our Easter outreach on O-str. We are going to give out chocolate bunnies and easter cards. We pray that there will be open doors to talk and pray with them!
After a Christmas break we are up and going again. Most of the ministries that we are working with shut down the week in between Christmas and New Years. At the moment we have a team here with us from Costa Rica. They are doing outreach here in Berlin for 2 weeks and we are helping them plan their outreach. It has been a good time. We have been doing a number of different evangelistic events and have kicked off with Hasenheide (the park).
We went to Hasenheide on Thursday and gave out free Coffee and Tea to the drug dealer who are standing there. We also had a powerful time in prayer with team. We had a good reception from most of drug dealers and are going back tomorrow or Thursday. We want to start by building relationships with them and sharing the love of Jesus. When we were there praying it was confirmed to us again that this is definitely the place where God wants us to be.
This week when Michael was at teen challenge he was talking with a women and she decided to give her life to Christ! Yeah!!! We are so excited! She was talking about how empty she feels and how she cannot overcome her addictions. Michael asked her if she wanted to invite Jesus into her life and she did.
We are very encouraged because many times it is more about building relationships and to see someone coming to Christ is so exciting! This is our goal to show people Jesus and see their lives changed by him.
Oh my goodness! On Wednesday we were on Kurfürstenstraße again and the girls came from every corner to tear the gifts out of our hands.
But let’s start from the beginning: Hello everybody! It’s great that you have found your way here. Last week was all about Christmas. Everything was white and cold… But also our ministry was very much in the spirit of Christmas: Tonight, we will go to sing and talk with the prostitutes at Oranienburgerstr. and on Wednesday we were with the prostitutes at Kurfürstenstr. and gave them gloves, T-Shirts and sweat shirts.
We have seen many happy faces this evening. We didn’t open the cafe but all went out (also to carry all the stuff :)). Shalyn talked with the girls together with another lady and the rest of us started to sing Christmas carols from a distance. That took quite a bit of adjusting but the girls liked it a lot!!! Unfortunately, we couldn’t take any pictures because of the privacy of the the girls but we hope that we can show you one day , how our ministry actually looks like.)
I also had a chance to talk with a guy who was standing around the girls. He told me that he believes in nature and that peace is very important for him. I was able to pray with him but he is still very firm in what he believes. This happened to me a couple of times lately. People believe in nature… They believe in the goodness of it and how we should take care of it.
That is by itself not a bad thing but how can you have any kind of hope if the nature is all you believe in!? That is so abstract that I don’t even went into that.But anyway, I think that is just another form of this “putting together” of ones own religion into every religion which seems to be very popular (at least in Berlin). Everybody believes in something else. In every conversation you hear something else. It’s unbelievable. I once even talked to a guy who trusted that technology will figure out eternal life before he dies.
Still we have to go on and share the good news. Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
Gods bless you!!!