Below are some bullet points of the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last month:
· Angie and I celebrated 35 years of marriage on August 14; it is so good to be married to, and involved in ministry with your best friend. Ang is a virtuous woman, wife, and mother, and grandmother, and I love her with all my heart!
· August was a difficult month because one of our regular meeting attenders, Jeremy killed himself on 8-5. Although I did not know him well personally, several others did, so we have tried to minister to the grieving friends and help provide healing and hope.
· Another man who had attended our meetings a year ago, also committed suicide on August 25th; he is someone that I did try to reach out to and invest in, so his death hit me pretty hard and showed me how dark addiction is.
· On a more positive note, I received word that a man who we helped get into the City Union Mission’s program 6 or 8 months ago, is still there and doing well, and is in a role with the Mission where he’s helping others!
· We helped a man with his home plan, to get from Cass County Jail, and into Joshua House on 8-6! He has been faithful to come to our meetings and has been attending church as well, so we are thankful for God’s work in his life.
· We also helped a young homeless man to get into Joshua House on 8-8, and he’s also been coming to meetings and church, so these two men have been successful in recovery and have “turned to God from idols” – 1 Thess. 1:9.
· Another man who has come to our meetings became homeless in August, and we were able to help him get a place to stay, by connecting him with a single man from our church who is allowing him to stay with him for a while.
· We had six people achieve our Alumni status in July and four more in August, so we are very proud of all these folks!
· One of our woman leaders began HBF’s Woman-To-Woman study in August; both of these women are very zealous.
· Three of our leaders completed HBF’s discipleship course, and will be starting HBF’s Discipleship 2 course in September, along with another of our leaders, so I’m excited to see our team growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ – 2 Peter 3:18.
· We applied to receive free Royals tickets a couple of months ago, and were approved and gifted 50 tickets to the game against the Colorado Rockies on 8-23! We ended up taking 46 folks to see a good game on a beautiful night, in which the Royals won 6-4 by Hosmer hitting a 3-run walk-off homer in the bottom of the ninth, hallelujah!
· We helped three people get gas in August and two other people to get emergency housing for a night!
· Lauren returned from her short-term (3 months) mission trip to India on 8-22, and gave us a wonderful update from her journey on 8-25. This was our annual invite-a-friend night, and we had 80+ people present to hear her, and one woman prayed to receive Christ at the end of the night! We had three different musical guests that ministered to us that night; all were from our midst, which is something I have desired for a while – Psalm 37:4!
· Chris gave a great testimony on 8-29 and a young man prayed for salvation that night too!
· Pat Lee and Chris have been conducting weekly Bible studies at the Joshua House on Sunday evenings, and this is proving to be profitable for the residents there, so we are excited about this endeavor!
· I’m pleased to announce the totals below from our Recovery Walk, alongside of our goals:
- Money, we hoped to raise $15,000 = we raised a little over $13,000!
- Walkers, we hoped to have 100 walkers = we had 106 runners / walkers!
- Volunteers, we needed about 40 volunteers = we had about 50 volunteers!
- Pledge collectors, we hope to have 20 people request donations = we had exactly 20!
· This was our fifth Annual Recovery Walk, and it was largest and most difficult event that I have ever been in charge of! I feel like from an outsider’s perspective, our event looked nearly picture perfect (the weather was perfect), it was well attended, volunteers had caution vests on and were all in place, all the signage was posted, transport buses were on time, the band was amazing, the guest speakers words were crafted perfectly from hearts that care! Our audio / video was excellent, our water stations were staffed, all tables and chairs and tents were in place, the food was great, our church parking lot was alive with activity, and all runners / walkers arrived safe and sound, with the guidance of four-wheelers and gators and escort vehicles. Behind the scenes however, seemed chaotic, so please forgive me if I was unkind to anyone and overlook my faults as I grow in wisdom and my role as Life Issues pastor.
Sincerely, Steve Fleshman – Life Issues pastor and founder, Proverbs 4:23…