Do you know that you can have a “true fast” with 170 Hot Dogs?
In Isaiah chapter 58, God clarifies the difference between false fasting that God does not honor and true fasting where we’re instructed to disconnect from ourselves in order to share our time, food, home, clothing and to just plain “pour out our hearts for the homeless”.
This past weekend the 7th annual Ironman Conference was held up at the Union Rescue Mission where a mix of 150 men from different cultures – men from Pacific Coast Church in affluent San Clemente are mixed with the men of the mission in the not so affluent heart of skid row. The goal of the Ironman ministry is for the men of PCC to come along side our brothers from the mission, form discipleships and mentorships that turn into life-long friendships, honor God and have the opportunity to “set the oppressed free.” :)
Friday night – The IM7 weekend kicked off on Friday night in the chapel with some amazing (and also heart wrenching) testimonies from two of our brothers Philip and Seth from the mission. We then transitioned up to the roof of the mission where the PCC men barbecued 170 hot dogs (yes, Hebrew National, what else is there?) for our URM brothers, then served up some tasty root beer floats.
Saturday – The heart of the conference got under way with a message from the apostle Peter a.k.a Pastor Dan, then meet-and-share breakout sessions, mission tours, training for us PCC mentor guys from the chaplains, lots of worship, mentor-mentee testimonies, then a really awesome concert from the Pawn Shop Kings. After this we all walked together through the heart of skid row where we shared lots of laughs at the bowling alley while bowling and eating pizza. We all broke 200 (calories that is).
Sunday – The men of the mission came down to our neighborhood in San Clemente where the PCC men barbecued a huge man-food meal of steak and potatoes for our now new friends and brothers from the mission. Then we then headed down to north beach in San Clemente for one of the most cherished parts of the weekend where the PCC and URM brothers form yet another bond in witnessing multiple men baptized into the family of Christ.
For both the PCC and URM brothers, IM7 was one of the best weekends of our lives where new friendships were formed.
To me, the best thing I heard this weekend was a URM brother saying about his PCC brother with pride in his voice … "Yeah, he’s my mentor!"
This past weekend we experienced a true fast as Isaiah tells us about… with 170 hot dogs, 150 Subway Sandwiches, 36 pizzas, 75 Steaks… all enjoyed together by 150 brothers from different mothers.