Thursday, September 14, 2017

Monthly Update - August 2017

Making a difference update, from the recovery field – August 2017 edition…

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…



Monthly Update - July 2017

Making a difference update, from the recovery field – July 2017 edition…

Below are some bullet points of the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last month:

· A personal announcement that’s unrelated to our recovery ministry is that Angie and I’s son and his wife (Luke and Brenda) began being the ministry leaders of HBF’s High School class; we’re very proud of them!
· I failed to mention it earlier, that our 8-week Project Strength Class (Harvester’s nutrition program) wrapped up on mid-June, with 4 people remaining faithful to it; I really appreciate Mark and Laura's faithfulness to teach it!
· Speaking of finishing, one of our students finished the community service portion of his probation on 7-12; this same young man has started HBF’s discipleship course with one of our leaders as his sponsor.
· Speaking of discipleship, we had a different student who complete HBF’s discipleship course in July, and we have two of our leadership couples who are completing HBF’s discipleship course this month! All of these folks are planning to attend HBF’s D2 (Discipleship 2) class that is coming up in September, hallelujah!
· Brad gave a great testimony on 7-28 to about 50 people, of how he went from sports to marijuana, then from marijuana to meth; he then got victory over meth but turned to alcohol. Brad met Annie and got saved and got victory over alcohol and then got discipled and received pastoral level training, and they are now on track to be sent out to pastor a church in Clinton MO! Wow what God can do to those who surrender to him!
· Jim gave a great testimony on 7-25 and one young man gave his life to Christ afterwards.
· The Sunday night Bible study that Pat Lee is leading at Joshua House (men’s transitional home) is starting its second month and is going strong; they had one young man accept Christ into his heart on 7-30!
· We had 3 salvations this month within our ministry, and one of our students gave his testimony at a church in California in early July, and 3 other souls there made professions of faith there!
· We are helping to get a man from jail into Joshua House next week.
· We gave away 4-6 boxes of food in July, and our pantry stills seems full, PTL!
· One of our lady students is gaining full custody of her son this week, we’re very happy for her / them!
· One of our Alumni became a grandpa last month, and two of our students had babies in July!
· We took over a dozen people to a meeting in Butler MO on 7-24 and heard 3 great testimonies and some great music; things were going well until one of the speakers exhibited some physical / health problems, and the meeting was cut short and an ambulance was called. The man was hospitalized overnight, then released, and is OK now; he has had some infirmities in the past, but they aren’t sure why he nearly collapsed that night, please pray for him and his ministry in our neighboring county.
· We had over 20 people attend our Recovery Walk Kick-Off meeting on 7-15, and there was a sweet spirit of fellowship and comradery as we discussed finances and logistics, below are our goals this year:
- Money, we hope to raise $15,000 this year
- Walkers, we hope to have 100 walkers this year
- Volunteers, we need about 40 volunteers to staff the walk this year
- Pledge collectors, we hope to have 20 people request donations from others this year
· We’ve had over $1200 come in so far, and another $4000 or so in pledges, so we’re over 1/3 of the way there, but we didn’t get a couple of the big companies this year, that we had last year, so I’m not sure where funding will come from, but I’m trusting God to meet all our need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus – Philippians 4:19
· We raised $12,000 in 2016 with 13 pledge collectors, so we hope that 20 can raise more, please pray it will.

· I’m kind of neck deep in fundraising this month, and am finding myself trusting God more than ever, as we attempt to do a great work for our Lord in these last days. It’s hard to describe what it’s like being in my shoes, but there’s several things going on that touch me and that I know are from the Lord. Last week a couple from our church decided to sell sweet corn from their garden and give to our walk, how sweet that was to me! One lady left work in time to get a packet to take to her church and try and raise support for us. Another lady at another church helps us each year, because her sister died of an overdose and she wants to help others. On the page below is a description of what we’re doing, if you want to be a part of it; written by a true man of God and a dear friend…

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

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Life Issues’ – 5th Annual Recovery Walk announcement

Everyone is invited to participate in the 5th annual Life Issues Recovery Walk.  The Recovery Walk is the primary fundraiser for the Life Issues Addiction Recovery Program, an outreach ministry of Heartland Baptist Fellowship (HBF). This year’s Recovery Walk is scheduled for Friday September 1st, 7PM at Heartland Baptist Fellowship (walkers should arrive by 6PM in order to be shuttled to the start line).

The “Walk” is a 4.4 mile walk, run, or jog starting at the Cass County Justice Center.   The Walk symbolizes and celebrates the journey many of our Life Issues members have made.  They may have begun their recovery course with incarceration at the Cass County Justice Center, but they have made their way to church and a relationship with the Lord.   Anyone in the community is encouraged to join us in our Recovery Walk to Heartland Baptist Fellowship.   There is no cost to walk, just come to HBF on Friday September 1st about 6PM, and we will provide transportation to the “start line” at the Cass County Justice Center.  The walk will officially begin at 7PM.   This is a family event and strollers are welcome.   Unfortunately, pets are not able to participate so you will need to leave your furry friends at home.   Along the 4.4 mile walk, there will be several water stations, a nurse, and a portable restroom.   We also have several golf carts, ATVs, and cars available in case someone needs a lift to the finish line.  We try to make the walk as safe, fun, and as comfortable possible.

When the walkers arrive back at HBF, we will enjoy an evening picnic with grilled food, activities for the kiddos, raffle drawings, and a concert from a local Christian praise band.  We will also hear inspiring testimonies from our Life Issues members and an update from our Drug Court friends.  It’s going to be an exciting evening under the stars and celebrating recovery from the issues of life.

Now, there are many ways you can participate.   First, you can lace up your sneakers and join us for the evening walk.  Second, if you are not up for the actual walk, you can help us raise money for Life Issues by collecting pledges from family and friends.   If you can collect $100 in pledges you will receive a free Life Issues limited edition T-Shirt.  Thirdly, you may want to help Life Issues with operating or organizing the event. We can use your talents and abilities to fill many positions needed to carry out an event such as this. And lastly, you are welcome to do “all the above” if you wish. See Steve Fleshman or Chris Coen for a pledge form and for details on how you can help; they will be located in HBF’s foyer between and after services during the whole month of August!

You can also check our cool “Walk Introduction” video on the Life Issues YouTube Channel https://youtu.be/8krpDgfGRDI

Plan to join us on Friday September 1st for the 2017 Life Issues Recovery Walk. Make some new friends and new memories.




Monthly Update - June 2017

Making a difference update, from the recovery field – June 2017 edition…

Below are some bullet points of the highlights that happened in the Life Issues ministry over the last month:

· We helped woman with gas on 6-9, so that she could help husband get back and forth to work.
· The Christ Centered Recovery (CCR) group from Butler had a soul saved on 6-11 @ the Harvest America campaign!
· We helped a student get back to town on 6-28 from out of state.
· Dennis completed our TATs program on June 23rd and we awarded him a certificate and victory tag, and he gave a wonderful testimony that night!
· Ace died on 6-24 due to cancer, I could not attend the memorial, but three of our folks did, and we sent flowers, please pray for his widow (Chrystal).
· One of our former leaders, Lauren, is on a short-term mission trip to India, and she took three of our Life Issues t-shirts with her and gave them to three pastors there, that really excites me to think about!
· Life Issues participated in HBF’s Fourth of July Intentional Gospel Outreach (IGO) at the Harrisonville park, there were about 40 volunteers (10 were Life Issues leaders & students) that helped distribute approximately 650 John and Romans (Books of the Bible), and over 100 Gospel Tracts with Life Issues contact info on them!
· On July 5th, we gave $200 to help a couple to get their electric turned back on & on July 6th I learned that we received $200 anonymously for our food pantry, doesn’t that sound just like God?!
· On July 7th, the Miner’s childcare officially have their own cabinet in the Son Beams classroom @ HBF for toys, snacks, etc. We have affixed a “Miner’s Childcare Ministry Rules” on the outside of it for worker’s clarity.
· Pat Lee will be starting a weekly recovery meeting at the Joshua House on 7-9-17, for the residents there!
· On July 15th, we will have our Kick Off meeting for our 5th annual Recovery Walk. Please plan to attend this crucial meeting at 9am at HBF, in the Common Grounds room. We have already received about $1000 on our way to this year’s goal of $15,000, as well as several non-monetary donations for door prizes and raffle items, i.e. free tickets to the zoo, 54th street food cards, QT merchandise, and more! We have a long way to go, and tasks to complete and volunteer work to be done, but below are some other achievements we’ve made:
- The Harrisonville board of Aldermen unanimously approved of / granted us a permit on the second week of June, at their monthly meeting.
- We have a homeowner’s permission to place a porta-potty and a water station in their yard.
- Laura is calling some local chamber of commerce businesses to solicit pledges
- Jim has filled out dozens of online applications and solicited multiple businesses for pledges; please pray that God will lay it on their hearts to be benevolent and gracious to us!
· Brad will be giving his testimony on 7-28, and sharing what God is doing with his work in Clinton MO.
Below is Wendy’s testimony that she wanted to share:
As a member of HBF I sought God's Council on what Ministry to join once I finished my discipleship. "Life Issues Ministry” was suggested to me by my discipleship teacher, because I had lots of life issues going on. And praise the Lord for my issues, or I too would not have seen God's plan in my life. You see we all have life issues, not just drugs or alcohol. God not only changed my life with this ministry but my son's also. God took my son's drug lifestyle and used it to help me help others and learn from it also in "Life Issues". Because of Gods plan, my issues once again were blessings, and I can now testify about them, and my son got saved and is now clean, and going thru our program!! You too can join in our soul-winning ministry; one way to learn more is by participating in our "Recovery Walk" that is coming up on September 1st on a Friday evening! Registration begins at 6pm @ HBF and the walk begins at 7pm, we hope to see you there! It’s free to walk, but if you want to help us obtain pledges, or volunteer, see Steve Fleshman for more info (816-896-5621)!

“And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins… For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:1, 10
Sincerely, Steve Fleshman – Life Issues pastor and founder, Proverbs 4:23…