This means that the staff of HOUSE OF LIFE have to have a depth of spirituality, a deep knowledge of the Word; and wisdom, knowledge and understanding in knowing how to counsel, discipline and lead the people. Mistakes are inevitable on the road to experiential knowledge. Every time you realise that the wisdom you had was not the right kind, because you do not produce the fruit you expected in a girl, and that you need a richer, deeper wisdom, you are tempted to sorrow, inadequacy, even guilt. However our humanity, while real, cannot be allowed to overshadow a greater reality- the girls still need encouragement, guidance, counsel, discipline and instruction.
Many policies and practices are immediately seen to be the right wisdom. Those that are obviously wrong are discarded. The model of the tree has proven itself time and time again. As soon as we get to know a girls we can see if her main problem is spiritual, moral, community or excellence. Immediately we teach, counsel, preach, encourage, exhort and discipline so as to build these qualities, grow them, encourage them, strengthen them.
We are extending the model of the tree by journaling. Every weekday the girls are doing their journal. Every day they are given their journals, they write them, answering four questions.
1. Have I Loved Jesus today? [Worship, time in the Word, prayer etc]
2. Today have I done what is right? [Practiced the righteousness of Jesus; obeyed God]
3. Today have I lived in community in THE HOUSE. [Not jealousy, resentment, anger, etc] 4. Today have I been diligent and learned excellence
Each day the journals are collected. each day they are examined and it is readily seen where counselling and encouragement is needed. Obviously nearly every day the girls fall short of the standard of the Word of God ....... and also the counsellors! All have sinned, all deserve the wrath of God ..... but all may receive the mercy of the Lord. This teaches not only the holiness of the Lord, but also the Grace and mercy of the lord. Not only these but also a daily reminder that excellence must be developed daily. Without excellence no work done will succeed.
Then the journals are collected and kept in security.
This is teaching the girls to learn to walk in the light as the lord does. They have been used to a lifestyle of hiding sin, hiding pain, hiding fear, hiding loneliness and confusion. Now these need to be bought to the light, confessed, cleansed and healed.
It is helping those who teach to 'itch where it scratches', or to accurately teach where the need of teaching is.
It is helping the staff to really know the kind of life these girls have lived, and to observe the miracle of changed lives. It is critical to know what the girls have been through, the way they lived. They way they lied. The way they survived. The way they were manipulated into offering themselves to slavery by pimps. The way they deceived clients into allowing them to steal from the client. The style of the beatings they received. ...... so that ministry can be shaped so as to meet the real and actual need.
The tree model and journalling is producing revival. The house is becoming a community of believers. Those who are not strong and being counselled and exhorted by other girls, instead of being tempted and discouraged. For a long time we battled with girls who deliberately dominated other girls, divided the unity in the house, discouraged each other etc. But now there is a change with godliness ruling in the house and true spirituality in their hearts.