Bruised Reed Farm Missions Trip
The Bruised Reed Farm is a run by homeless men who live at the Atlantic City Rescue Mission, a Christian homeless shelter serving southern New Jersey that is a member of the Association of Gospel Rescue Missions. The farm produces 30,000 lbs. of produce per year that is served in the kitchen at the Rescue Mission and sold at a local farm stand to benefit the mission. We worked on the farm alongside these men and at the donation center at the Mission, sorting and organizing donated items.
The real work on the trip, however, occurred in our hearts, and we hope in the hearts of those we worked with. Here’s where we saw God at work:
- While many from our team were nervous to share the gospel, God matched our team with those we encountered: a school teacher with the boy who lives next door to the farm, a Marine veteran from our team and a Navy veteran from the shelter, and a testimony from a team member with the shared experiences of a once incarcerated man from the shelter
- A man from the shelter giving the kids from our team a lesson on staying in school
- Some members of the team finding heart shaped stones – first when someone needed encouragement, and then later discovering that the number of stones they found was the same as the number of people from our trip
- Restored relationships between the farm owner and the work crew. We were told the owner hadn’t been out on the farm since spring due to the strained relationship, but she came out the second day we were there and returned again each following day and spirits between all seemed improved.
- The neighbor boy taking bibles and bracelets to his cousin and mother; and his cousin coming out to work with us on subsequent days.
- The love of Jesus in one another. We were a mixed group from Riverside and the community, most of whom did not know one another. We laughed, we cried, we prayed, we worshiped. We grew together through our experience and we were befriended by the men and staff from the shelter. Each of us left feeling that we had grown on this trip.