It didn’t take long for God to reveal why He sent me to this homeless shelter. My mission team members kicked off morning devotions to a group of 90 men with powerful, individual words of love and encouragement and a message about the father heart of God. I had planned to pray for physical healing for the group, but when it was my turn and I stood in front of the room full of men, many of them former gang members and convicts, I knew the Lord had a better plan. I wasn’t sure of the exact words He wanted me to say, but I knew God wanted me to share my story.
Nervously, I grabbed the mic, looked at the men and began to pour out my heart. I explained that I never expected my first time speaking in front of a large group would be to a group of men. I said God loved them and wanted the best for them. I asked for forgiveness on behalf of women who had hurt them. Men all over the room started crying. I shared my story about living through an abusive marriage and challenged them to be champions for women. By the end, many more men were in tears. After I had finished, several of them approached me to share their own stories. One said that when I spoke to the group, he saw an image of his wife’s face in his mind and for the first time was able to truly forgive her.