Derrick is one of my heroes. I have a few, but he’s certainly one of them! I recently returned from South Africa where I had been with Derrick and his team for two weeks. Through delivering our Foundations for life and ministry course, hanging out with the team, running workshops and many other things, I learnt a fair bit about grace… and stuff.
Derrick and his wife Priscilla are fabulous – as different from each other as a lion and a lamb, they form an awesome team. I learnt two simple and profound lessons as I watched and worked with both of them and through these I am beginning to learn the incredible power of grace.
As my colleague put it, Derrick is unorthodox in his approach to life and ministry and relating to others. In Fusion we have certain ways of doing things and running programs, but the outcomes we are after are pretty clear – that people have experienced something of the way Jesus would relate to them, were he here in physical person. Derrick doesn’t always do things the ‘right way’! Sometimes it’s because he doesn’t have the man power, or the hours, or the finance, and often it’s simply because he does it better a different way! But always the young adults he works with know he loves them and he is giving his life for them. Through their interactions with him and his team, they are learning to walk with Christ. A Day Trip may look pretty different but the outcomes are the same.
Priscilla has a different approach to Derrick. She likes her ducks all in a row… systems, parameters, frameworks, if there are rules she’ll keep to them. This sister is a force of nature in the chaos of life; literally. She was able to take a budget of next to zero and created good food for 20 hungry young adults (and old!), constantly looking ahead and creating, she anticipated and met the group’s needs for care and sustenance. And Priscilla does all this from a gentle, fun-loving nature that’s firm and fair and leaves everyone knowing that she loves them and is happy to be serving them.
This couple have shown me that if Christ’s love is compelling us and we are intentionally seeking ways to express that love authentically so it can be heard and received, then God’s favour is on us and he takes delight in revealing himself to others through us. Whether we are living by the rules… or not.