We left Minnesota Monday morning and made our way to Iowa. Mondays are rest and travel days. We have the day to travel to our next location, be a little touristy, and just chill. Then Tuesday we hit the streets and meet locals, do some promotion and ultimately put on a show on the Wednesday.
I am SO excited about today's show. Our venue in Davenport is The Center. The story of this building, the organisation and all they do in the community blew me away. Over 10 years ago some Jr High and High School students visited Rocketown in Nashville and were inspired by their indoor skate park. They were determined to see that happen in their city.
Upon their return, they came back to their church and noticed the building across the street. It was a furniture and carpet store at the time. The teens felt with conviction that this was their building. So they began to pray around the building, trusting that one day their dream would be a reality. The building eventually did go on sale. But the next obstacle was how do they get their church to buy them a 1.3 million dollar building. They continued to pray, put together a business plan, met with their church board and did all they could.
One day the building was sold. An anonymous donor purchased it and gave it to the church. The church then had to wrap their minds around what to do with this building. So they sat down, came up with a plan and the congregation raised 1.3 million to renovate the building.
It is so insane how what started as a dream for these young people became a reality. Not only did they get their skate park (three stories worth, mind you), the building which houses The Centre is also home to homeless ministries, one of the largest food banks in the Quad City area, schooling programs for youth, and a skate church where kids come and skate and hear a short message before the head back to skate.
The buildingn we're staying has three floors of skateboarding ramps, a rock climbing wall and a food pantry, thrift store, dance studio, showers that are free for anyone in the community to come use daily, and some offices above it. In the adjacent buildingthere is a cafe where the make breakfast and lunch daily as long as the resources are available. People come and eat, see old and new friends and get some much needed community. The Center also has a biweekly laundry outreach, where they go to a certain laundromat and people line up to have their laundry paid for.
It's insane the amount of things that are done through this organisation. While we were hanging out Monday night a man came by with crates full of milk and miscellaneous grocery products. He works at a local grocery store that has decided that instead of throwing out damaged or unwanted products they would give it The Center so that those with a need can have access to milk.
On Tuesday I went looking around and walked in to the Solid Rock Cafe. There I met some really amazing people who love and serve the homeless community everyday through meals and friendship. I met this amazing young man named Drew who shared his story with me. We had lunch, made some friends, did dishes together and later I introduced him to the team. He wound up spending most the day with us. I am thankful we could be community for him and could offer him a reprieve from the streets even if for one day.
This beautiful place has already grown on me. I am more than certain that I will be back to Davenport again. There is truly something beautiful at work here. Pray for this city, it's young people, it's many homeless men, women, and children and those who have dedicated their lives to serve them. It moves me and warms my heart that all this life and hope was birth out of the mouths of a couple of young people who dared to dream big.
It challenges me and I hope it would be an encouragement and challenge to us all not to underestimate the power of our dreams whether lofty or small. Our dreams are never to big or impossible, nor are they ever too small to be worthy of realisation. Theses kids dared to dream the impossible and not only did they get something that was probably beyond their imagination, their audacity snowballed and touched so many more lives than they could have ever thought. Let us follow in their example.