Moving Beyond Routine Responses

A development we have come to deal with in ministering to the homeless men of the KC metro area is that they do not normally, habitually take responsibility to change their lives.  They, like all humans, develop “comfort zones” even if it is by all appearances uncomfortable to others.  We have undertaken processes to help them see the opportunities for a new life that is in front of them.  When men come to the emergency shelter and remain just as guests for a long period of time (years) we call upon an “intervention team” to meet with the man to discuss his future.  Options are presented as we prayfully look with them for a future to their lives.  Of course we are first interested in their spiritual lives, a real, living relationship with Jesus, but then we help them see other options for living outside the walls of the Mission.
In our long-term program men again get stuck in a “comfort zone” not making progress as the program is designed, or they begin to go backwards.  We then meet with them using a 2-page questionnaire called the ‘Opportunity For Change’.  It deals with the choices and behaviors that the man has been making and living and guides them to see the options available to them.
Both of these techniques can help move the men forward in their lives.  Now you have another inside look into the Men’s Ministry at City Union Mission.
(Written by Gary Mountz, Director of Men’s Ministries)