Preaching Christ to the destitute certainly isn’t a dream job. They don’t have much. If you pass a collection plate out, you might not have a penny in it when it gets back to you. And many of them are so jaded by life that they just can’t believe there’s a God out there that actually loves them.
But Debra and her husband Nickolas believe that preaching Christ to the homeless is what they’re called to do. They see the pain and suffering that they’re going through. They know there is One that can heal them. And He has called them to be His witnesses to the homeless, the outcasts, the deaf, the lame… They will be preaching Christ to those cast aside by society.
I am Debra Figueroa. I am married to Nickolas and we have a daughter, Joy, who still lives with us. We have six other grown adult children who live also in Milwaukee–a Midwestern city in the United States. I am being called by my awesomely, big and mighty God. He loves me so much as He speaks to my heart with a still, small, voice. I have heard this voice as a child and always had a choice, but chose not listen. I was scared. If I listened, I chose not to believe. When I believed, my believing was crushed because I listened to the discouraging words and chose not to trust. Instead I gave in to fears, doubts and negative thinking.
Wow! I was discouraged a lot but God is calling me to be an encourager and to live the dream and vision that He gave me. In fact, I was convinced at times that I didn’t have a voice of my own until recently. So I became a victim of my own thinking and circumstances. With that thinking how could I encourage anyone?
I did not realize the many challenges and obstacles I would have to face. With a blended family of 4 children, I stayed busy with practical everyday living and not liking many aspects of my life even though I was faithful in church. My husband and I had three more children together. He was not living for God and I was worn out from constantly fighting so many spiritual battles all day long.
Finally, I decided that it’s a heart issue and I was tired of the excuses and letting uncertainty control my life. God promised me life so abundantly and rich. He said he would bless me and my family exceedingly abundantly above all that I could ask or think. So I got tired of being a victim and chose to rise up as a victor instead. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. When I made bold decisions to move forward to believe and trust God I could see my warrior-self rising up to take authority and fight the real enemy.
So now I am ready to take the final quest and journey into the far reaches of His Kingdom. God has been teaching me to look for and notice patterns. He wants me to be a creative communicator and writer. I have had this interest for a long time. He wants me to creatively communicate in a way that makes clear the intended message He wants me teach. So my passion is combining these skills and to show people how to have a deeper and more meaningful relationship with God, their maker and creator and to live out that relationship by making a difference in their community, and serving God with their whole heart.
It has taken me a long time to be fully ready to give it my all but now I am ready and willing! I do have a vision that reaches beyond what I’ve ever thought could be possible because of how I limited myself in the past. It had to take a severe church hurt and a very rocky marriage, a death of a grandchild, some severe health issues, very hurtful relationships with others and us losing our house to bring me to this point. After serving in a church and doing what man wanted for 15 years and putting God’s vision of me evangelizing in the community on the back burner I am ready to step out in full faith to fulfill my purpose through Christ. I have been running from it long enough because of lack of confidence in myself. But God is building my confidence in Him. He is my confidence and strength. He is my stronghold and shield. My faith is in Him. He is leading me and directing me because of my willing heart.
God’s timing is perfect. My husband is now serving God with his whole heart. He is drawn to our new small church and the loving pastor. Our church is multi-cultural (so is our family) and is in a predominantly racially mixed and troubled neighborhood. But God is in control and He has a destiny and purpose for all of us. The Pastor is behind our vision and we support the Church’s.
My husband and I also want to help the homeless. I am moved by the plight of the single-parent families who are trying to make ends meet. Drugs, alcohol and sexual perversion dominate the lives of the people who are crying out for freedom from their bondages. Statistics show that homelessness in our area hits hard the single parents raising children on their own who can’t make it on low paying wages. How can I sit comfortably in my home with the blessings of God and not share my resources and the practical help that they need so much? It is with God’s love being demonstrated that they can finally receive the love of God for themselves and make a decision to serve Him.
A CLI scholarship would allow me to gain credentials to reach the homeless, broken, blind, lame, and deaf in this community. This scholarship is so important for helping me to mount up on eagles wings and to soar to new heights in Christ Jesus so that I can do my part to fulfill my calling. The time is now. I am so ready. I give God the glory. Amen.
Thank you for allowing me this opportunity so that I become more fully grounded in the Word in order to be better equipped to serve others. To God be the glory! Amen!
Can you see yourself preaching Christ to the poor in your community? Do you feel called to share the gospel with others? Christian Leaders Institute has many classes designed to help with preaching Christ to all people. If you would like to be better equipped for preaching Christ, or just for your personal walk with God, you can enroll now by clicking here.