Monday, July 15, 2019

Monthly Update - June 2019

Making a difference update, from the recovery field – May 2019 edition… Below are some bullet points of the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last month:

· One of our men started a 9-week financial course (Dave Ramsey – Financial Peace University) on 6-3, we’re very proud of him!
· We helped a couple with gas and food on 6-9
· We helped move an elderly lady on 6-6 & 6-10, I was very thankful for the help of about 10 others!
· We’ve had 5 people make professions of faith in June:
o A man and his wife prayed to be saved on 6-8 outside at the Flying J truck stop
o One of the lady’s at Lily’s House prayed to be saved @ HBF on 6-9
o Two separate ladies prayed to be saved at the Tuesday night Life Issues meeting on 6-11
· One of our ladies lost most of her teeth due to meth use, was able to get dentures on 6-18, we’re very happy for her new look and ability to eat more things now!
· A husband and wife graduated from a parenting class on 6-20, please pray that they can get their son back in their home.
· We gave emergency housing and a box of food to a homeless man on 6-24
· We provided emergency housing for lady on 6-26
· One of the men who has completed our program, just signed up for HBF’s D1 course!
· One of our husband and wife couples went to Moberly MO on 7-3 and brought home a former student of ours that found himself without a place to stay and without transportation, etc., so that he could live with his mother again for awhile.
· We gave another box of food to a lady / former student on 7-3
· Our 7th annual Recover Walk / Run fundraiser (RWR) is picking up steam, here’s an update: 

o We had 18 pounds of hamburger donated to us on 6-10, for our upcoming RWW
o We signed a contract with Race Day Timing Solutions to time a run (see attached poster)
o AMC theaters donated 10 movie tickets in early June
o We received our new trifolds (500) in early June
o Porta Potties have been squared away, buses have been requested, graphics have been designed and literature is being printed, etc.
o We’ve given out about 15 pledge forms already and multiple folks have started getting pledges!

· On August 2nd, we will have our annual Homecoming event, and will be inviting all our alumni, graduates, and former students, some special guests, as well as our current folks. Bill Corum (Author of The Ultimate Pardon) will be our speaker and he will present “A Father’s Blessing” to us as he does in many different prisions. Consider yourself invited to this special event, to be held at HBF @ 7pm on August 2nd!

· Testimony of one of our ladies: 
"I was broken from a very young age. I had a father who never wanted me and a mother who was mentally and emotionally unavailable. She had been broken from a young age and used pills and alcohol to cover her pain. I experienced physical and sexual abuse from family members, and emotional and mental abuse from my mother. I was a lost little girl, shy and confused but most of all I felt alone and lost in an enormous world. I started smoking and drinking at 12 to fit in, and drugs at 13 and 14. Hey I had friends now. At least I thought so. By 15 I was addicted to weed, and I wanted out of my mom's house and left to live with my older sister. By 16 I had a full-time job and a daily meth habit. The people I ran with taught me how/used me to sell drugs and to commit all types of crime. I had my first child at 19 and got indicted on federal charges at 20. I stayed clean for a couple years while doing my sentence of bootcamp and probation. As soon as I got done I got right back into drugs and I had never quit heavy drinking. I picked up selling drugs and other crimes.

After several years, this time I found myself in county jail. Where I had a true 'jailhouse' conversion. I gave my life to Christ in a dark jail cell after a Bible study one night. I had seen and connected with a woman walking out her faith in the worst circumstances. I finally felt hope and peace. I got out and had no support and ended up homeless and pregnant before finally getting away from drugs and the lifestyle. I had my twins, then went to serve my time on my 7 charges including traffic tickets, possession with intent, fraud and theft.

I felt peace and comfort from the Lord. While in Jail waiting for sentencing I met people from Heartland Baptist Fellowship and learned about Life Issues. And over the 13 months incarceration God showed me that only through the Bible would I have lasting recovery but more importantly REDEMPTION! As a condition of parole, I needed to complete a parenting class and I asked my PO if I could attend Life Issues to fulfill it. To me it was a win/win. Christ and recovery for me and an obligation of my parole fulfilled.

· The moment you walk in to Life Issues you are wrapped up in love and belonging that only comes from Christ. Over time I kept coming because I loved the fellowship and seeing others victory’s in recovery and their walk with Christ. I was asked to become a leader and even though I felt unequipped God gave me everything I needed to serve that role. My life has been a roller coaster ride since Christ found me in that jail cell in August of 2010 and I wouldn't trade any of it for one minute using or living my old lifestyle. I am so thankful for Life Issues for coming alongside me and helping me to walk out my own faith. "




- Sincerely, Steve Fleshman – Life Issues pastor and founder, Proverbs 4:23…


Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Monthly Update - May 2019

Making a difference update, from the recovery field – May 2019 edition… Below are some bullet points of the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last month:

· Two new folks started our program in May, so we’re excited about that!
· Two of our folks completed HBF’s discipleship II course in May!
· We picked up a man from the Salvation Army and took him to court on 5-9, and he got good report from the judge and doesn’t need to come back to court until after he graduates from their program, it was great to see God at work in this man’s life and through the court system!
· Sabrina completed the CSTR program on 5-9, she’s a blessing and living in victory!
· Sam had 3000 days clean and sober on 5-11, hallelujah!
· One of our lady leaders got her Class E license in April, so that she can drive the Lily’s House van, and help bring their folks to our meetings!
· There’s a new lady now living at Lily’s House since early May, and she comes to LIM faithfully and loves it and is ministering to others already!
· We updated our website on 5-24, check it out at www.lifeissuesonline.org!
· We gave 2 night’s emergency housing to couple with small child on 5-29 & 5-30
· Angie P. achieved Alumni status (she’s over 10 months clean too), see attached pic!

· We had about 20 of our leadership folks at our Recovery Walk (RW) kick-off meeting on 5-18, and we rehearsed many things and started the ball rolling for this year’s annual fundraiser!

o We’re thinking about combining our walk with a run this year (more to come about that)
o We were granted a permit for the RW on 5-20 from the city of Harrisonville
o We’ve gotten over $1000 in pledges already and prospects for another $1000 (our goal is $15,000), and we’ve identified about 80 businesses that we’re planning to talk to, once we have our literature, in addition to friends and family!
o We finalized our new trifolds and ordered 500 of them
o The Drug Court has offered to send us volunteers again this year
o We’re working on a promotional video for the RW that I’ll send a link to next month
o We’ll be in full swing this time next month; please be in prayer for our 7th annual Recovery Walk. This is our only fundraiser this year, so let me know if you can help us in any way!

· Here’s a brief testimony of what God is doing in one of our lady’s lives: 
"I have great parents who love me, they raised me in the Baptist church. I was saved in 1977 @ Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church when I was 12 years old. I managed to stay away from drug abuse all through high school and into adulthood. Then things started changing; one failed marriage, then a new marriage and a son, financial struggles, my son struggled in school, etc. I got a good job, but my husband attempted suicide and the second marriage failed. My house burnt down, then I bought a new home for me and my son. Started doing meth once in awhile for fun, then using every weekend. From there it snowballed into addiction. Started living with my dealer, all the while I still believed in God. I knew he was protecting me because I didn’t get in trouble with the law, or worse.

I didn’t break away until my son told me he would leave, and I would never see him again. February 1st, 2015, I got clean and stayed that way for 2 ½ years. Recently I had a 9-month relapse and then started coming to Life Issues during that time. I started seeing God working in other’s lives, and I felt God tugging on my heart. On April 6th, 2019 I got clean again, and I’m staying clean by the grace of God, and with the help, love, and support of family and friends, including the great people at Life Issues! "




- Sincerely, Steve Fleshman – Life Issues pastor and founder, Proverbs 4:23…


Thursday, May 23, 2019

Monthly Update - April 2019


Making a difference update, from the recovery field – April 2019 edition… Below are some bullet points of the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last month:

The Tuesday night meetings are going well and are well attended, Pat Lee is doing a great job of leading it!

We gave away 3 boxes of food in April!

Our group signed and sent a card to an inmate on 4-1.

One of our students started our program, The Journey Home on 4-3.

Several of our students went door-to-door to invite folks to HBF’s Easter service!

One of our students completed a 30-day in-house treatment and is now back home and coming to meetings; this person had court recently too and was allowed to stay in the free world and on probation, and they are thankful!

One of our ladies is now 8 months clean, and her husband is 6 months clean, great team-work!

A couple of our men went to a men’s retreat on 4-12 & 4-13!

The Prisoners Of Hope (POH) jail ministry had a young man trust Christ as his saviour in mid-April – Luke 15:10!

We supported another fundraiser that’s trying to get Bibles into the Philippines, on 4-22.

One of our students got out of jail and into Aminta House in late April.

One of our student’s aunts joined HBF on Easter (4-21).

Our recovery group cleaned the church on 4-26; I appreciate all those who pitched in and helped us old folks!

I visited one of our graduates, who has cancer on 5-1 and is struggling with the side-effects of chemo.

We helped a man with some gas money on 5-2.

One of our ladies graduated from our program (TJH) on 4-2; she also phased-up to her final stage in another program that she’s in, below is her testimony…

 I grew up in a home where violence and drugs were okay, God was never a part of my life growing up. When I got older, I decided to try drugs, something I always swore I’d stay away from. From 2013 through 2017 I was with a very abusive man mentally, physically and emotionally I ended up having two kids with this guy. In July of 2017 I decided to numb my pain with cocaine and meth for the very first time, biggest mistake of my life. It’s like once I started there was no slowing down.

 A few months went by that only felt like days and next thing I know my life fell apart overnight; my son and I got shot, cops ended up raiding my house and finding a lot of drugs etc. The state stepped in and took my kids they went to my grandparents, thank the Lord for that blessing. That should have been a wakeup call, but it wasn’t, it just sent me lower than I already was. May of 2018, they issued a warrant for my arrest I couldn’t take the pain of losing everything and going to jail so I tried to hang myself. The Lord was looking over me that day, as soon as I did it one of my buddies walked in and grabbed me. Cowardly way out, but I wasn’t thinking about anybody’s pain but my own. A couple of weeks later, the Johnson County Kansas police caught up to me and I ended up going to jail there to wait for my transfer back to Missouri.

When I got transferred back to Bates County, I stuck to myself. I always thought the woman in the pod were strange, they prayed every night before bed, till I realized all you got in life is your faith. A few weeks in there and I started to go to church, reading my bible, and doing bible studies with the girls. I can’t tell you how many times a day I prayed to God.

 In August of 2018 God answered my prayers and I got released to the Lily House, a shelter for women. Being there I would have to go to groups; Life Issues was one of those. This program excepted me for who I was, they didn’t judge nothing, they just encouraged me to be better and gave that helping hand of support that every struggling person needs. August 12th, I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior. Since this day I have stayed involved with the church, completing the Journey Home and going to Life Issues. I continue on the path the Lord wants me on and in return he keeps blessing me with many things. The state released my custody case with my kids an they’re back with me full time, I have almost a year of sobriety and I have a job to support my family again, the right way. Without the support from the Lily House and the church I would not be at where I am today.
 



Sincerely, Steve Fleshman – Life Issues pastor and founder, Proverbs 4:23…