Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Monthly Update - May & June 2022

Making a difference update, from the recovery field – May / June 2022 edition. Below are the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last couple of months (new format):

I. Benevolence

· HBF gave benevolence to one of our lady’s, so she could get her car fixed on 6-7

· Life Issues bought phone card for man on 6-21

· Life Issues helped pay for one of our students get an MRI for an injury on 6-22

· Life Issues gave a gas card to man in order to help him get to Illinois on 6-25

· We took food to a hungry couple on 7-5

II. Jail update

· We’ve written to several letters to inmates over the last 2 months, and several have written back! The man I’m writing to has completed 2 out of 7 discipleship lessons!

· We’ve got an opportunity to provide an outreach to the young folks at the Cass County Juvenile Detention Center in a couple of months, there’s more to come about this.

III. Church

· Our recovery group cleaned the church on 6-10

· HBF held their VBS on June 20-24, and many of our leaders and students helped with this outreach to our community as well as our own youth! Chris and Lauren C. were the leaders of this event that ministered God’s word to about 60 young people each night – PTL!

· We had a group of 3 people that helped out at the food pantry in Harrisonville on 7-1

· Several of our students and leaders are involved in discipleship:

o Discipleship 1: Chris H. just signed up to be discipled; Chuck H. & Dave B., Sarah L. & Pam J., Matt & Marcy L. & The Bonnesens, Ed M. & Chris C., Sarah W. & Linda J., Kelly T. is working with two ladies in a group setting, Krystal W. and Krista G.!

o Discipleship 2: Dale N., Caleb L. graduated D2 – see group pic.


o Discipleship 2: Pam A. and Suzanne R. are signed up to take D2 this fall!!!

o HBI graduation: 5 men graduated from our Bible Institute on June 12th, one of them was our son and another is one of our Life Issues leaders, Chris Coen (Valedictorian) – see pic.


IV. Recovery

· Emily H. rededicated her life to Christ on June 14th, and also got baptized on 7-10 – see pic.


· We took a man to rehab on 6-22, pray for him to let Christ into his life.

· Theresa G. completed the Emotions study on 6–17, this was a 10-month class we offered – see pic of her and our instructor (Pam J.).


· We were contacted by a person in Illinois recently and was able to help them via email and connect them to a local church.

· We have 3 men going through The Journey Home (TJH) right now, please pray for them to complete it.

o TJH: Dustin T. & Chris C., Dominick B. & Steve F., Chris H. & Pat L.

V. Events

· HBF had a 4th of July outreach called “Spark in the Park” and Pat Lee led this effort and several of our Life Issues leaders and students participated in set up and tear down and with sharing their faith and distributing American flags and gospel tracks. This was a great outreach, and we praise the Lord for the divine appointments that day!

· Several of our Life Issues leaders and students went to the Faith and Family Day @ the Royal’s stadium on 7-9 and some of us were encouragers and helped lead multiple people to Christ after a gospel message was given by Evangelist Scott Dawson – see pics.


· Our 10th annual Recovery Walk is coming up on September 2nd, this is our annual fundraiser, so please look over the attached cover letter and see how you might be able to help us.

VI. People

· We had a Baby Shower for Sarah W. on 5-13, and she had baby Nova Jean on 6-16 – see pics.


· Zach M. is going to graduate from the Drug Court on 8-5, we’re so proud of him

· Suzanne R. is going through The Women’s Study with Lisa L. right now, we’re excited about Suzanne’s hunger for the things of God!

· This month we’re highlighting a lady who’s only come a few times to Life Issues, but we’ve helped with some physical needs, and we’re excited to share that she’s 80 days sober and is getting to see her children for the first time in several years. I’m excited about what God is doing in her life and she wants to share part of her story with us

"I remember that day like it was yesterday. I was 19 years old. I had a 1 and a ½ year old son, 
Kaleb Nicholas. It was cold that morning. February 16th 2003. I was 5 and a ½ months pregnant 
with fraternal twins. A boy and a girl. They had to rush me into an emergency surgery to deliver 
the babies. You see, on valentines day just two days prior I went to a routine ob/gyn check up 
appt. I had an ultrasound scheduled due to me raising concerns about one of the babies not 
having any movement for 24 hours. The ultrasound shows that my daughter's umbilical cord had 
snapped and she was barely alive. They couldn't take them out just yet because they had to 
administer steroids by i.v. in the hospital to help strengthen their lungs. Again, I was only 
beginning the last trimester so my babies were still way too early. I was aware of the severity of 
everything medically done but also, not so much. I was still quite young and although at that 
point I had 3 babies, I knew little to nothing about most things in the world. Anyhow, on 
valentines day I was admitted to the labor and delivery floor. The doctors, although my daughter 
was dying, had no choice but to keep them in me as long as they could. On the morning of the 
16th, they had no choice but to prepare me to deliver as the ultrasound that morning showed my 
son's amniotic bag had broken and his heart was failing. Later that afternoon, I laid on a hospital 
bed in the operating room, my mother to the right of me. She tried so hard to stay strong for me, 
as she stood up several times to look over the doctors as they delivered Alexia Claudina first. 
She was not breathing and weighed 1 pound 13 ounces. Next came her brother Ty Francisco he 
weighed 3 pounds 15 ounces. He was immediately rushed to the N.I.C.U. and my daughter was 
taken to a separate room to be cleaned up. I’ll never forget the moment the nurse walked into 
the room. They tried to hand my daughter to me the first time but I could barely breathe as the 
tears poured down my face. She looked perfectly fine. I wasn't understanding. Couldn't they just 
get her to breathe and be ok. I mean, their doctors. How is this even happening? She was so 
beautiful. So very tiny. I dressed her in her little baptism dress and placed the pink and cream 
flowered bonnet on her head. Her hair. Oh her hair was beautiful black. Her eyes, she just 
wasn't blinking that's all. Her lips were so precious and I couldn't bring myself to let her go with 
the nurse. I just kept kissing her lips, blowing tiny breaths in her mouth praying to God please 
God please let her just breathe. I went down to the chapel, where my family and I prayed and 
we baptized my precious little girl. 4 floors up in the hospital was my other gift from god. My 
precious son Ty. He was in an incubator in the N.I.C.U.For 3 months actually. 
I know this is supposed to be a testimony and not a short novel. So I apologize to everyone. 
After 5 days I was sent home from the hospital. With my son Kaleb. Leaving behind what I 
walked in the hospital with just 5 days before, 2 BABIES. This is all wrong. I will tell you the 
short amount of time that it took me to become dependent on daily use of marijuana, anxiety 
pills, sleeping pills, pain pills, uppers downers, then to smoking meth. Shortly after my son Ty 
turned 1 I got together with my high school sweetheart. My first love Josh. We had two sons 
together, Peyton Grant and Ashton Fisher. Unfortunately due to my drug addictions, and the fact 
that I was taking approximately 2000 pills each month, Josh had no choice but to pack up 
himself as well as all 4 of the boys and move out. Literally like they were there one day and then 
they were just gone. That was in 2014. I became homeless overnight and without a vehicle, a 
job, any money, and nowhere to go I was forced to go to the homeless shelter here in our town. 
That's where I met Robert Dean. He was 27 years older than me, an ex member of a biker 
gang, retired pipe fitter, he has money out the you know what. He started getting high with me a 
few times a week until i didnt make curfew at the shelter and got kicked out. Within hours I was
moved in with him, higher than ever, leading this new awesome life I thought. I felt like a famous 
person. Like a rock star. We got married then shortly after moved to Missouri, his hometown. 
That's when my meth addiction became the only thing anyone knew about Sarah Jeffries. I was 
a good wife, not a great wife just a good wife none the less i was a stay at home wife, caring for 
my husband who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 lung and stage 4 kidney cancer. This was 
in May of 2019. We lived on 7.4 acres of his family's land. No running water, just a well. No 
electricity, we had a generator for about the first year but no money to power it. No money for 
the gas. We spent all 3 grand he earned with his pipefitters pension each month on meth, 
cigarettes, all that evil stuff. He was dying, the entire time I struggled and he struggled and we 
prayed and we prayed but that's all. We never truly let go, let God have control and just Be Still 
as scripture tells us. On January 26th 2021 I lost Robert Dean to cancer. I had 100 bucks in my 
wallet, two friends, no family, no idea what was about to happen next. It was about to be the 
best and worst experience and year of my entire life. Yes, the best and the worst. That’s right, 
what started out and continued to be for quite a long time….the worst experience…..its ending 
up being the BEST experience, and journey I could’ve ever imagined being my own. None of 
this would've ever been possible first and foremost without my Lord and Savior. I was blessed 
beyond measure this time a year ago when Pastor Steve saved me. I sat in my barn on the 
phone with him for about 45 minutes. By the time the call ended I was able to shout out loud 
that I Knew For Sure I was going to HEAVEN. That's the most awesome and rewarding and 
fulfilling feeling ever. So I owe a special thank you to Pastor Steve. Whom I would have never 
met had it not been for yet another amazing blessing and gift from god Mrs. Pamela Anderson 
(Granny). She had invited me several times but it just happened to be a Life Issues Friday 
morning . She and I were at Yost Grocery Store. She invited me , as she often had on our 
outings together. I decided to take her up on the offer and little did I know that was going to be 
the beginning of the journey that is ultimately turning out to have Saved My LIfe. Looking back 
on all of it now, even just after 79 short days of being clean and sober, now I realize what my 
brother meant. He would always tell me “Sis you are going to die if you don't change and don't 
move from the place you are living and the way you're living”. I never understood. He would tell 
me he prayed for me often. Not remembering my brother as being a very religious guy, I began 
to try and understand the depth of his concerns and his constant need to pray for me. Things 
like that, I started looking at more and more. I hadn't seen any of these issues and or concerns 
everyone on the outside was seeing and voicing opinions to me constantly , about. But it was 
because I was in a camper all alone, with no food, no running water, no lights, no family , no 
friends , no nothing. I had forgotten the one thing the one person that i did have and had 
obviously forgotten all about. GOD!!! Of course Sarah. How could I have forgotten? The one 
who died on the cross for me. He died for my sins. He gave his life so that I could have mine. 
And this is what I was doing with my life. I met someone else special through all of this. Her 
name is Pam Jackson. She is my angel from GOD!!! Throughout this last year of knowing Pam 
she sure has been a faithful sister and friend to me. Oftentimes, I was probably hateful or short 
or just plain inconsiderate of the positions I was putting her in as she tried to support me 
unconditionally, some of the times not even knowing for sure which way to go and how to deal 
with me at the time. She was yet another person that god was using to help save me. Pat from 
Life Issues. Sometimes people get up and preach a sermon or give a speech and it's a great 
speech but sometimes we don't feel “in touch” with the person or the speech. Point Is…when
Pat speaks I feel like he's speaking directly to me. Like it's just him and I in the room. Meaning, 
he's that intimate and that passionate about sharing his experiences, his love, the words of his 
father and he's sharing and doing all of this with so much compassion. He may never realize the 
direct eye contact and interacting with me during moments of his sermons, how much it affected 
me through this. Pat, you have made such an impact. Thank you. 
I didn’t realize how much this next person impacted my life in just one short pizza dinner after 
life issues that Friday evening. Mom and I drove from Kansas to Life Issues in Missouri that 
Friday evening. We joined everyone after life issues for some Pizza. Mom and I sat with Pam 
and her son Caleb joined us as well. I’m never good at conversation and keeping one going at 
that. Caleb is closer to my age then Pam and mom are and so it was extremely nice and such a 
weight lifted once we started talking. He shared a little of his journey with us as we chatted over 
pizza. But then half way through as the conversations continued I noticed something. Caleb was 
giving me advice and encouraging me as a parent to continue down the path i've been going 
down. And too never give up. And there it was. That direct eye contact. That compassion, 
concern and pure love and support . Caleb and I may have met one other time I think. But this 
was our first real sit down meeting and visiting etc etc so for basically this “stranger” to be 
looking at me almost like my family does. Ya know like someone who loves you and cares about 
you. With all this being said it's just so hard to find the perfect words to describe my gratitude to 
each of you. And there's so many more others as well. Pastor Steve asked that I keep this to 
one page and I think I”m already at 4 . Ey Ey Ey. 
The opportunity to restore my relationship with God, to rise up and conquer sobriety and 
educate myself on addiction more. To get up each day and put one foot in front of the other no 
matter how difficult the day's challenges may get. The all around self care and self healing that 
has come about so comfortably for me is a big deal and I’m so grateful. This is just the 
beginning of an already amazing story. The Story Of  SEJ"

· Please pray for God to use us mightily in 2022, for without him we can do nothing, but through Him we can do all things! Sincerely, Steve Fleshman – Life Issues pastor and founder, Proverbs 4:23…

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