FACES - YWAM Singapore Issue.2018 - Page 21

Starting A Neighbourhood Café hen God called Glen to YWAM in 2012, he couldn’t be happier. As a young person, he always felt that his life’s calling was out in the mission field, carrying people in his heart as a worshipper and intercessor. He was pleased to find a home in YWAM where he could be committed to missions. But after two years, God gave him the word to leave his ‘home’ and step out into new territory: the marketplace. As a teen, he had worked in a well-known café. As he coupled that experience with his growing passion for coffee, Glen knew exactly where to look for his marketplace work when he left YWAM. Glen recalls the early days of working in a café. “The first day on the job was the hardest. I went from being surrounded by a loving, affirming community to a dog-eat-dog world, where criticism is commonplace and competition is a way of life. I found my refuge every Monday at YWAM’s corporate worship time. I needed to be reminded of who God is to make sense of what was happening.” With God’s word to him as the only anchor, he endured for two years and learnt the tricks of the trade. Even though there were many failures and uncertainties, Glen began to gain a stronger sense of purpose for this new season. His passion for coffee roasting grew and that led him to start his own café in the heartlands of Singapore: Prodigal Roasters. knows that his goal is to break into the coffee roasting market, sourcing and roasting excellent coffee. There is no doubt that Glen still feels like he is finding his way in the industry. His daily struggles are very real. He battles the temptation to give up, and give into the discouragement of the ‘daily grind’ (pun intended) and the nagging thoughts that his sweat and tears will amount to nothing in the end. But time and again, he has found the strength to take the next step, simply by hanging onto the word of the Lord. As a result, Glen’s understanding of God’s name Jehovah Jireh—the Lord provides—has grown deeply. “I never struggled with God’s providence in YWAM, He always provided! But in the marketplace, it has been my greatest challenge.” Once, while he was in Germany, God even had an Egyptian lady remind him not to worry about his future. “I wept like a baby, because I knew I had forgotten this truth!” Yet, God continues to provide. Earlier this year, Glen was given the the honour and opportunity to use his coffee expertise as ministry. He was invited to equip a few missionaries with the skill of coffee making, and give barista training to the ladies of Tamar Village. “These opportunities are really precious to me, as it reminds me that God brought me out for a purpose. It assures me that my struggles are all worth it because I know that I would not have been able to do all these things if I had stayed in YWAM.” Glen knew right from the start that being excellent in the marketplace was going to be a tall order. But his goals were simple. He desired to make the best coffee he could, and use that to serve as many people that his little café, with only 12 seats, could accommodate. That little shop space became his mission field; his staff is his family and his customers have become his friends. The name of his café—Prodigal Roasters—encompasses the purpose of God’s call to him. Inspired by Jesus’ parable about the father who loved both his lost sons extravagantly, the name reminds Glen that he has been a recipient of God’s great love. This compels Glen to serve people with an extravagant love as well. The most valuable lesson he has learnt is the importance of focus. “You have to know what God has called you to focus on in every season,” he says. Even though he has started small, Glen This knowledge keeps him steadfast. As a boss and a husband, the pressure and responsibility to be the provider is real. “If I’m not doing a good job, condemnation creeps in. But this is still the place where God wants me to be, and He will make sure I’m taken care of, simply because he is my Father.” 19