March 15th // Emily Royal

Posted on by SpokaneYFC


Almost every morning, I am the first one awake. I slowly make my way down the stairs, plug in the twinkle lights, light a candle and then I head to the kitchen where I grind my coffee beans and brew some coffee. I then sit in the same comfy chair, positioned by our front window that looks out towards the neighborhood and spend time reading and reflecting on God’s living word, praying for my friends and family near and far, as well as my beloved neighborhood, West Central.

One of my roles at YFC involves running our Club56 ministry to 5th and 6th graders at our local neighborhood elementary school, Holmes. I have spent many hours walking around Holmes Elementary, whether it be on the playground, lunch room, or sitting with students in the office. Each day I have been a witness to the amazing administration that loves and serves their students day in and day out. Over time I’ve grown to recognize the faces of many students, and have been counted as a trusted adult within the community by parents, students, and teachers. I count this as an immense gift.


Club56 takes place every Friday afternoon after school is let out. This timing is strategic, as Friday is the only day of the week where no after school programs are being held at Holmes, leaving YFC with the opportunity to serve the community in a real and tangible way. On any given Friday if you were to stop by and visit our club you would maybe get hit by a dodgeball, or be asked to join in on a game of four-square or pool. You could sit down with some students who are painting, coloring, or making friendship bracelets, eat some ridiculously yummy snacks provided by our wonderful partner HRC ministries, and if you stayed long enough you would encounter a story about who Jesus was, and hear about the kind of people he surrounded himself with and how he loved others.

As a leader and director of this club I invite students into a legacy. I tell them stories about the many students who have come before them and have called this place their home, called their leaders family, have discovered and learned things about themselves, and ultimately have developed a rich relationship with God. This is where it begins for a lot of our students in the West Central neighborhood. It begins by getting to know them in their school, meeting them on their turf and inviting them into a space in their neighborhood that was designed and created for students like them! We serve a diverse group of 5th and 6th graders. We see students whose parents are still involved, fathers who are still in the picture, students transitioning from home to home, students whose parents let them wander the street until 9 at night, and students who have already experimented with many different kinds of substances and the risks that go with them. Everyone is welcomed on a Friday afternoon.

As I sit in my chair any given morning, if I sit just long enough I will see the same 5 to 10 students walk past my front yard on their way to school. See, students that attend Holmes elementary school most likely live within the neighborhood which means that most if not all walk to school every morning. I love sitting in my chair with my cup of coffee in hand praying for every one of these students as they make the journey to school that they will encounter the living Christ who calls them by name, and wants and desires a rich relationship with them.

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