Sparking a Poverty Abolitionist Movement


Upstream Impact

A Career Development Program Like None Other

Upstream Impact

Providence Bible Church

A Thriving Community in Northeast Denver

Providence Bible Church

Jason has a master's degree in theology and has worked as a pastor since 1996. He is an education activist and social entrepreneur with a burden for helping the poor, developing leadership, and world missions. Jason is the founder of Providence Bible Church, co-founder of Upstream Impact and CrossPurpose, and serves as Executive Director of Upstream Impact. He enjoys the mountains, leadership, reading, and being with his family. Jason and his wife Jen have four boys and live in the Whittier neighborhood of inner-city Denver.


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Man In Black by Johnny Cash

Well, you wonder why I always dress in black,
Why you never see bright colors on my back,
And why does my appearance seem to have a somber tone.
Well, there’s a reason for the things that I have on.

I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down,
Livin’ in the hopeless, hungry side of town,
I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime,
But is there because he’s a victim of the times.

I wear the black for those who never read,
Or listened to the words that Jesus said,
About the road to happiness through love and charity,
Why, you’d think He’s talking straight to you and me.

Well, we’re doin’ mighty fine, I do suppose,
In our streak of lightnin’ cars and fancy clothes,
But just so we’re reminded of the ones who are held back,
Up front there ought ‘a be a Man In Black.

I wear it for the sick and lonely old,
For the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold,
I wear the black in mournin’ for the lives that could have been,
Each week we lose a hundred fine young men.

And, I wear it for the thousands who have died,
Believen’ that the Lord was on their side,
I wear it for another hundred thousand who have died,
Believen’ that we all were on their side.

Well, there’s things that never will be right I know,
And things need changin’ everywhere you go,
But ’til we start to make a move to make a few things right,
You’ll never see me wear a suit of white.

Ah, I’d love to wear a rainbow every day,
And tell the world that everything’s OK,
But I’ll try to carry off a little darkness on my back,
‘Till things are brighter, I’m the Man In Black.

My wife and I entered Cole Arts and Sciences Academy with little idea of what we were getting ourselves into.

We had just moved to the inner city and were looking for a school for our three school-age boys. A friend told us to check out Cole — a brand-new school with a new staff and a great leader. I had no idea of Cole’s troubled history as the only school in Colorado to have been closed down twice. I had no idea that 96 percent of the kids lived in poverty or that over 90 percent were below grade level in their reading.

No website, school report cards, or records of previous years record could be found. Cole was a brand new K-8 school.

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