David Smith, Founder and Director
When I first went to the streets in July 2010 in search of someone to befriend, I entered a world that was very different from the one to which I had always been accustomed. The loneliness, confusion, and fear I saw on the faces of the people I met was beyond anything I could have imagined. I couldn’t sleep at night for thinking of the desperate needs of those people and what I might be able do to help meet those needs. Now, “those people” have become “my people” and it is the joy of my heart to pour my life to minister to them and help lead them to a new and better life. I am still a pastor at heart-- just to a different congregation.
My congregation now comprises alcoholics and drug addicts, prostitutes, runaway boys and girls, displaced families, legal and illegal aliens, the aged and senile, and the mentally ill. Some are temporarily homeless because of job loss or divorce, but for many others it is a chronic condition the end of which they cannot even conceive. They pick through garbage cans for something they can use (or eat). They sit down to rest in bus or train stations until they are chased away. They sleep in shelters or in a nook or cranny they have found in an alleyway.
One of the saddest aspects of the homeless community is the “shelter kids.” They are dragged from shelter to shelter and if they attend school at all, it is sporadically. They see themselves as permanent members of an underclass that defines and will always define them. I have come to know many second-generation homeless people who have resigned themselves to their situation with no hope of things ever changing.
But the good news is things are changing for many of these people. They are finding new hope and taking a different path as they experience God’s love in very practical ways as our teams and I reach out and touch them at the point of their felt needs and share with the Good News that their lives can be made new by the power of Christ. Many to whom we were privileged to minister a few months ago are now actively involved in helping us to minister to others!
We have served more than 60,000 meals, distributed tons of clothing and shoes, as well as many other items essential for their survival such as tents, sleeping bags, blankets, toiletries, and backpacks. We have shared the gospel with thousands and seen many of them confess faith in Christ as we have ministered to the homeless in cities across the state.
The needs are enormous and the opportunities to make a lasting difference in the lives of these precious people are plentious. We desperately need more volunteers to help, more donors to give, and more believers to pray.
We will not be satisfied, nor will we feel that our job is done until every hungry mouth is fed, every ill-clad body is clothed, every displaced person finds a home, and every person has found a rich and meaningful life in Christ.
Meet Me at the Bridge is a
Non-profit 501(c)(3) charity.
All donations are tax deductible