212 S. Rockwall Avenue
Terrell, TX 75160
Fridays @ 5:30pm (dinner), 7:00pm (“The Circle”)
“The Circle” is what we call our weekly community gathering every Friday night at 212 S. Rockwall Avenue in Terrell. It’s our service. It’s our getting together and as a group affirming that Jesus is with us. It’s a pause in the life of the neighborhood to acknowledge that Christ is Lord. It’s our Selah: a time to pause and take a breath and consider the weightier things of life.
Here’s how it started and evolved:
The first time we came to The Corner and handed out fliers, we walked over to the guys standing around in the empty lot next to us. We told them what we wanted to do around there and asked if they would pray with us. Surprising us, they set down their beers, circled up, joined hands, and we prayed. There were around 20 men that day.
We determined we would be out there from 3 till 4 every Friday. We printed up some flyers to hand out and set up a table with some groceries to give away. People walked by. Cars drove by. Some took our flyers but most walked or drove on by.
Then across the street walking toward us through an empty lot came Carlton. We had never met but that didn’t stop him from telling us that we were doing it all wrong. He grabbed the flyers out of our hands and stood in the middle of the street whistling and stopping traffic and shoved the flyers at everyone.
This all happened in the first 15 minutes we were on the Corner. An Inspector for the City pulled over in his truck and asked if we had a permit. We told him, “No. Do we need one?” He said he wasn’t sure and he called his supervisor. The supervisor drove up and said we had to pack up and leave until we find out if we needed a permit because he didn’t know either. We called City Hall and no one knew if we needed a permit. We asked to finish up that day and get with the City Secretary on Monday. The supervisor said no and told his worker to make sure we pack up everything and leave.
The supervisor got in his truck and drove away. The worker sighed and asked how long we were planning to be out there that day and we told him until 4. It was 3:15 then. He said, “How long will it take you to pack up this stuff? 45 minutes?” We responded, “About that much time.” He said he would be back at 4:05 and we needed to be gone. And we were. We got a permit the next Monday.
During this encounter, the guys we had just prayed with had gathered around us and when the City workers left they began saying some pretty colorful things about them trying to run us off. In a quarter of an hour with a brief and minor confrontation with the Code Enforcement personnel, the guys on the Corner were on our side.
Every Friday we have met for prayer with them and bring them some sort of Good News of the Kingdom. We try to be there every day just to talk and visit. Those are the key moments but Friday evenings are the opportunity to remind all that gather that we are a community and that Jesus is with us always. It’s a reminder to all of us that we are His people and His Love endures forever.
We have volunteers who prepare dinners for Friday nights now. We start serving around 5:30 PM. At 7 PM we call everyone who would like to join us to come and join “The Circle.” We pray and someone speaks for 10-15 minutes and then we pray again. Sometimes there’s a lot that join in and sometimes there’s just a few. Whether the numbers are large or small, we still have “The Circle.” Faithfulness always.