Just a brief message to ask prayers for Edson, the first young man to come to Christ through the Jesus in the Streets ministry. Edson has had a lot of ups and downs even since our last message asking prayers for him in 2017. Year before last he survived one attempt on his life and yesterday there was another. He was stabbed several times and apparently left for dead.
I don’t think I ever shared before how Edson wound up on the streets. He was a good kid, grew up in one of the biggest favelas in downtown Recife, but was intelligent and stayed in school with hopes of following a different path than his brothers, both of them involved in drug dealing. Then one day everything changed.
Edson was sitting in front of their small house when he saw two young men approaching. He overheard one of them say “It’s not him, but it’s his brother, get him.” In an instant Edson was on his feet running. The first bullet missed, the second caught his arm and the third misfired. At that point Edson was around the corner and down the street as fast as he could go.
The way things work in places like the Santo Amaro part of town, either you kill the guys who tried to kill you, or you never go home. That’s how Edson wound up on the street. Two years later when we met him he had been using drugs and alcohol but was trying to quit. He began coming to church with us and before long a sister got him a job at a school where he worked hard and was respected for five years.
Then, the school laid off several workers just to not have to raise their salaries and Edson was one of them. It really messed with his self esteem. If you knew how hard it is for a man from a poor family with no formal education to keep a respectable job, you’d understand. At the same time the enemy brought a woman into Edsons’ life who helped him further down the wrong path, and the rest is an old, old story.
Edson has been in and out of several recovery programs, including Christland, made comebacks and backslid more times than I can remember. But I don’t believe the Lord’s given up on him yet. If he’s still here Jesus is still seeking Him. And there’s his name: Edson dos Santos – Edson of the Saints. Pray for Edson that he’ll survive, and maybe, just maybe the rugged street he’s on today will one day lead to another one paved in gold.
And just one more thought…
Thanks for your prayers,