Foundational Work At Alabaré
My life was in a mess; two failed marriages, depression, anger, unforgiveness, you name it, I had it. There was no sense of direction for me and I went through each day looking forward to going back to bed and a few hours rest but even that was denied me.
Though I believed in God (because I went to church) there was no evidence of His presence in me. Nevertheless, one day I prayed a simple prayer which was “Lord why does everything I touch go wrong, what is the root of my problems?" Into my head seemed to come a voice which said to me “Look into a mirror and you will see the problem” This was a shock as, like so many other people I blamed anyone but myself for my problems.
Sometime later I made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ after which my life began to change as I allowed Jesus to lead me. This led me to College, training for the Ministry and finally ordination.
Years later someone asked me if I would like to train for Chaplaincy with Alabaré who I knew nothing about. My wife and I eventually completed the course after which we were asked if we would become the new Chaplains at the ‘Drop in Centre’ in Trowbridge; and so for me began a journey into the unknown with Jesus leading me. The Bible says: ‘God is fair and just; He corrects the misdirected, sends them in the right direction. He gives the rejects his hand, and leads them step-by-step. From now on every road you travel will take you to God. Follow the Covenant signs; read the charted directions’ (Psalm 25:8-15). Nothing is more important in life than being led by God who has a unique plan and purpose for you. When you’re not sure which way to go, stand on His promise: ‘I’ll take the hand of those who don’t know the way, who can’t see where they’re going. I’ll be a personal guide … directing them through unknown country’.
All this (though I was unaware of it at the time) was laying the foundations for Dorothy and I to begin a work for God which was unique to us. Alabaré was the Foundation and the tool which our Lord Jesus used to get us into the place where He needed us to be; I think it would be true to say that neither of us would have chosen this work at random.
Many years ago whilst in at the College in Canada, the Lord gave me a scripture to read which was Isaiah 61:1-11.At the time though I understood the content of the message, I had no idea that the Alabaré Drop in Centre would be the fulfilling of that message so many years later. Nevertheless the work which the Lord began for us at the Alabaré Drop in Centre in Trowbridge has been the tool which has led at least three men and one woman to make a personal commitment to Jesus Christ over the time we were at the old Duke Street Site.
Within the last year Breakthrough has taken over the running of this provision, and we are grateful to staff at Alabaré for their ongoing support in sharing knowledge, systems and offering chaplaincy training. Now Dorothy and I oversee the Drop In Centre. We combine it with our role as chaplains to one of Alabaré’s homes (Young People Leaving Care) also in Trowbridge, and with the Life Conversations Spirituality programme at Alabaré. God is good. If we honour him, he will honour us. God bless you all.
God has a unique plan and purpose for you. When you are not sure which way to go, stand on His promise: 'I'll take the hand of those who don't know the way, who can't see where they're going. I'll be a personal guide.....directing them through unknown country. I'll be right there to show them what roads to take, make sure they don't fall into the ditch. These are the things I'll be doing for them - sticking with them, not leaving them for a minute' (Isaiah 42:16 MSG).