Outside Done – Bus Wrapped!

Thanks to 11Alive News and The Color Spot, the outside is done…. Woohooo… It was extremely awesome picking up the bus this past weekend, and seeing the transformation to the outside complete. Now, all we have to do is complete/finish the inside.

Currently, we are building/framing sections and taking steps toward completion. This is super amazing to see the bus that we were donated back in September 2014 come so far… God is truly pushing this project forward.

We ask that you help us raise the last 20K to not only finish the interior of the bus but to get the bus up on the road providing full makeovers to people in need around the city. These funds will cover more materials needed to continue transforming the inside of the bus, labor, and get us running.

Below are the before/after photo, and the framing we have done on the inside. If you’d like to give, please click [HERE].

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IKEA & LBW

Help us to continue to make a difference. We’re participating in the 5th annual ‘IKEA Life Improvement Co-worker Challenge’ – a program that gives our charity the chance to win a makeover from IKEA (16th Street Location). This makeover will help us create a training space for those in the community that is functional, inviting and well-designed — a place our community can feel welcome and comfortable.

Participating is simple. All you have to do is go to www.IKEA-USA.com and vote for (‪#‎lovebeyondwalls‬). You can vote once a day from February 16th until March 2nd. It’s that easy! To vote, click the image below. Thanks for your support!

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LBW Team

21 Nights – Church

For the last 10 or so days, a few brothers have been staying with me on the bus. While I sleep on the top, they stay below inside the bus. Additionally, they have become out first #mobilemakeovers candidates.

With the help of several barbers, and generous donors, we will able to make them over, and this morning for the first Sunday of the year we are all going to church. Why? Because they asked to and outward transformation is not compared to the inner transformation that can take place.

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Below is a before and after pictures of the brothers! So far, I only have 9 more nights on top of the bus before I make thirty days. I ask that you help us change the bus so we can reach more people.

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Terence

Night 6 – Serving those in need

I got through nigh six in which it rained all night… It is always tough when it rains because it’s hard to sleep through it. However, early this AM many volunteers gathered to go out and serve the people our organization reaches, and is aiming to with our #mobilemakeovers bus. I only have 24 ore nights!

Below is a cool picture of the circle.

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Terence

Night 3 – Support from Angels

Yesterday was rough, but I made it through night number three… I made 50+ hours on top of the bus… I am living on to of a bus in a very confined space in a tent away from my family, and normal comforts of life. No TV, regular bathroom, walking area, refrigerator where I can creep around the house to get my favorite snacks, no recliner of comfortable sofa… You’re starting to get the picture.

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In fact, someone asked me “what has been the hardest thing you have had to deal with while going through this journey?” My answer is simple… Being alone, and not having all that I think I need.

But, I am also learning some very important truths. One being that you don’t need a lot to find joy, peace, and happiness. All you need is God’s strength, and valuable relationships around you.

Over the last two and a half days, over 20 people have called, stopped by, and reached out to me to let me know that I was not alone and they were praying for me. That brings me joy! One of the top people has been my wife. She has brought my kids by, and have sent me words to uplift me during this time. In essence, it has been the relationships I have around me that have given me the strength to continue. This reminds me of one of my favorite passages in the scriptures written by Solomon about friendship. It reads (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, NIV),

Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:
10 If either of them falls down,
one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
and has no one to help them up.
11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
12 Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

I know some people may still wonder to themselves  “this still doesn’t make any sense at all.” However, I am still standing on my convictions that it does.

If we are able to raise the funds for the Mobile Makeover Bus, we would be able to makeover homeless individuals, provide support for families in need, and launch a program that teaches people skills next year in 2015. I’m asking you that you get on the bus with me, and help me take a stand for people who are in need of hope, diginity, and support.

If it was not for my support, I’d give up this journey. So I can only imagine what people feel who have none at all, or feel like they have no sense of self worth. We care for those people… Help us support them so they too can take a stand in life and feel valued. Below is a clip from yesterday highlighting why I am doing this… If you would like to help us raise the 50K it’s going to take to convert the bus…click [HERE] Terence

 

Night 2 – I refuse to stop!

I have made it through night number two… I cannot believe it. If fact, last night a few people brought me some Christmas lights and food.

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But,  I woke up around 4AM because the rain was beating against the tent that I am living in on top of the bus. Even as I write this there are raindrops making loud music in the background to my words. If I could be candid, I feel vulnerable, weak, inspired, expectant, and a number of other emotions. If you haven’t seen the bus set up, this is what it looks like when I’m on top of the bus…

 

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However, I am determined to take a stand for people who do not have a voice. I have gotten told several times to stop because this makes no sense… Well, it does for me and #lovebeyondwalls.

This morning, I am thinking of the multiple families we encountered this year where children are living in single parent households and are sometimes unkeemped because the parent(s) can’t afford a hair cut for their child(ren). I am doing it for the kids that have very few clothes and have to go to school and endure the shame and ridicule that keeps them from their lesson. I am doing it for the person who is temporarily homeless and has no way of keeping themselves groomed. I am doing it for the mother who is about to interview but needs a hairstyle and clothes to make her look presentable.

Whether you realize it or not, there are people who need their confidence built, esteem built, and have the proper support system needed to receive the dignity they deserve. It is like my friend from the community Darren said yesterday… “Sometimes having a makeover helps people not feel stereotyped, judged, and outcasted.”

Therefore, I will keep going the next twenty-eight nights on top of this bus to raise awareness about people/communities that need to be made over. It is our vision to see this bus transformed so we can serve the people I mentioned above. Not only are we passionate about this, we are hoping you will get behind us and support #mobilemakeovers too.

Terence

Night 1 – Doing it for the people!

Yesterday was unreal.

Around 10pm a small group of us arrived back at the office where the bus is parked… I talked to my wife and kids, we prayed, and I climbed up to start living on top of the bus for the next thirty nights straight. My friend Dave built a pretty secure platform on top of the bus for my safety. It includes a porta potty, a small heater, and a little power so I can blog about my experiences.

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However, I know people are probably wondering “what in the world does living on top of a bus prove. Better yet, why in the world would you do it in the middle of winter. It makes no sense.”

Well, to me this means everything. This past year, our organization encountered thousand of people through service. We served tons of apartment complexes, and served a couple thousand homeless individuals in the heart of the city, and I noticed something very unique among all those we served. People have lost hope, a sense of self-worth, and even dignity. It is hard looking into the eyes of people and knowing that the only self-worth they have is their existence (meaning they feel they only feel worth because they are alive). In fact, I can remember encountering a lady in the apartment complex where we serve that said, “I feel like I am forgotten about… and I’m all alone…” This same lady said that she hadn’t eaten in a week because she was a senior citizen and had few resources.

No matter how you slice it, communities and people who live in poverty deserve to have a sense of self-worth, dignity, and even receive help that could possibly help them rebuild the pieces to their lives. We’ve seen recently in the news a underlining call for all people to start working in communities to restore the broken pieces that leave stains, and scars that never go away.

One of the ways #lovebeyondwalls would like to start helping the community is by reaching out to communities and homeless individuals by providing makeovers with our bus. These makeovers would be more than physical touchups, they would be like a launchpad for people to taking steps toward permanent change.

Still… This doesn’t answer why sleep on a bus…. does it…

Well, I am staying on this bus because we are serious about transforming the bus, and sharing compassion with many people who have no hope! We desire to go mobile to serve people in the city of Atlanta. It’s just that simple. I believe in what we are taking a stand for… And I believe that we will be able to band together with other organizations to help people.

Terence

Servant Leadership – Mobile Makeovers!

I don’t claim to be the best leader, but I have learned what my favorite leadership style is… It isn’t the most popular leadership style, but it is one that most aligns with how God has made me.

In fact, when you look at the New Testament, you’ll see that Jesus used the same model of leadership. What is it? That’s simple. It is “servant leadership.” It’s leading by serving others. Let me warn you though it’s not popular in a culture that tells you to place yourself first ALL the time.

In fact, if you were to do a google search right now on leadership styles all types of styles would come up that are often used by those leading organizations of all sorts. However, one leadership style you’d be hard pressed to find is servant leadership.

Why? Because servant leadership “is an age-old concept, a term loosely used to suggest that a leader’s primary role is to serve others (Haskett, Forbes)”

This past year, I have led with this style because it places people as the main priority. It’s grassroots, time consuming, and has high involvement, but is totally worth it when you see people touched and impacted…. In fact, it doesn’t always come out perfect, is messy, and has high risks, but the end goal is always to serve others. That’s what I believe God is most pleased with.

This morning, I felt the need to mention servant leadership because this is what we are aiming to display by getting our mobile makeover unit off the ground. Of course our approach is a little untraditional sometimes, but we are aiming to serve others in such a way that #lovebeyondwalls can play a major role in seeing people’s lives transformed. No agenda, no motives, no gimmicks,  just servant leadership.

Some have asked why live on top of a bus for 30 nights straight (and even called me crazy for attempting this)… But it is simple… To help us serve more people as we aim to get our mobile unit off the ground. I care about people, and have a deep desire to see people receive love, hope, and life transformation.

I ask that you keep me/us in your prayers as we embark on our next servant leadership journey. Additionally, think about supporting our cause by “Getting on the bus…” and clicking the image below.

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Terence