They walk the streets several times a week. They’re a band of God’s servants who love, feed and offer prayer to people whose choices have left them in circumstances they never anticipated or intended to fall into. This group is the staff, residents and volunteers of 7 Bridges to Recovery in Atlanta, Georgia. God is using them to reclaim territory — people — men and women He created who feel trapped in a world very far from Him.
Most of the people they minister to are trapped in cycles of homelessness and addiction. They feel helpless. The neighborhood itself is filled with homes that once held great beauty and charm, but have fallen into disrepair. Each time I accompany them, I’m reminded that the community and its people are simply a picture of the devastating consequences of living apart from God.
Yet it doesn’t have to stay that way. God wants His people to take back what rightfully belongs to Him:
“The earth is the LORD’s and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for He founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters” (Psalm 24:1-2).
And He wants to do it through us, one person at a time. God wants:
He has ordained to claim it through you, His child, just as He did thousands of years ago:
“You are about to cross the Jordan to enter and take possession of the land the LORD your God is giving you. If you carefully observe all these commands I am giving you — to love the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to hold fast to Him — then the LORD will drive out all these nations before you, and you will dispossess nations larger and stronger than you. Every place where you set your foot will be yours” (Deuteronomy 11:31,22-24).
Think about it: God wants to possess the “land” where He has sovereignly placed you. Satan has come in as an illegal squatter conquering and occupying land — lives — to which he has no rightful claim. He comes with a plan — to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). But greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4).
God is looking for people who, like those in the ministry of 7 Bridges to Recovery, will stand up and say “No more. Enough is enough. It’s time to take the land back!”
Who can do it? The description follows in Psalm 24:4:
“He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear by what is false.”
Such is the generation who seeks the LORD.
What can this generation do? They can usher in the presence and power of God:
“Lift up your heads, O you gates, be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle” (Psalm 24:7-8).
As God’s people seek Him, walk in holiness and go boldly for Him, God will do what only He can do. He will possess the land — our lands: our families, neighborhoods, cities and world. He will rebuild ancient ruins. Restore places long devastated. He will use us to renew “cities” that have been devastated for generations (Isaiah 61:4).
An incredible precedent has been set:
“So the LORD gave Israel all the land He had sworn to give their forefathers, and they took possession of it and settled there. The LORD gave them rest on every side, just as He had sworn to their forefathers. Not one of their enemies withstood them; the LORD handed all their enemies over to them. Not one of all the LORD’s good promises to the house of Israel failed, every one was fulfilled” (Joshua 21:43-45).
Scripture says, “Nothing is impossible for him who believes” (Mark 9:23). Will you believe God for possession of the land where He has placed you? Will you seek Him, walk in holiness before Him and then boldly go and practice Way #51 of 52 Ways to Glorify God?
Possess the land.
Let God use you to reconcile and restore people, even entire cities, to Himself. May these words be true in our generation:
“You have enlarged the nation, O LORD; You have enlarged the nation. You have gained glory for yourself. You have extended all the borders of the land” (Isaiah 26:15).
For more information on 7 Bridges to Recovery, go : http://7bridgestorecovery.org
Another great ministry serving the homeless in the Atlanta area is: http://atlantamission.org