Cypress Creek has been a difficult property to do ministry on. The kids are there on a very inconsistent basis. The apartments are filling up slowly. The residents are spread out in a weird way. There are alot more teens than younger kids. And the youth behave really badly, to be quite honest with you. And they’ve been tough to build relationships with.
But yesterday I turned a corner with the teenage guys. I went out there yesterday afternoon and used what I would call Brooks’ 5-step Process to Building Relationships with Tough Inner-city Kids with Bad Attitudes.
Step 1. Show off my basketball skills. I joined about 12 guys in a rotating 4 on 4 pick-up game. I played quite well, if I do say so myself. Of course, they lowered the rim to 8 feet so we could all dunk. This helped.
Step 2. Yell at a group of boys who took it upon themselves to get into my bag of chips and soft drinks that I intended to hand out after hoops. The boys swore they didn’t get them from me though they were the exact chips and Sprites I had brought. I called them liars and said I wasn’t born yesterday. I said just ask and I’ll give them to you. This actually bought me some respect from them and the other boys who didn’t get anything to eat or drink due to their lying thief friends.
Step 3. Invite the boys inside to see some awesome card tricks. Do tricks and freak them out, thus causing them to go get more friends to watch.
Step 4. Tell the girls who show up that we’ll have a girls Bible Study next week.
Step 5. Tell the boys to come back in two weeks and we’ll do the same stuff and have a bible study. They promise to be there.
And that’s how it works. Fun day. We’ll see what happens next time…