Monday, December 23, 2013

A Lesson in Faith

One of the joys of being a part of the Mission is the opportunity to pray with and for our guests. The Mission has existed for 102 years on the premise of faith. God has always provided to meet needs, and guests recognize that everything, from the meal they eat to the warm bed at night, is a gift from the "Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change" (James 1:17). We encourage prayer, as an avenue to express gratitude and to ask for God's continued provision.

Recently, a staff member shared about a young girl who always asked prayer for one of the little boys also staying in the shelter. This little boy was autistic and his condition made him non-verbal. Many children could have been afraid of him because he was different and his loud expressions, that passed for speech, seemed intimidating. Her prayer was that this little boy would one day talk.
It was a humbling reminder of the need for faith as evidenced by this young girl. We, in our "knowledge" of his condition and obstacles, might consider this an impossibility. We might not even presume to ask for something that would require a miracle. But she had faith that God is able to do, as He said, "far more abundantly than all that we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20).
Our prayer for you, this Christmas, is that you experience faith like this young girl. That in the midst of the busyness and the "obligations," you get a sense of the wondrous miracle that is Christmas. God, in His love, sent His only begotten Son, as the great Redeemer and Rescuer of mankind. A gift born to set people free. And you can go to Him with your troubles and your fears. Your needs and your failures.
The little boy in this story has since left the shelter, with his mother. The staff were excited to see the improvement made during his time at the Mission. God alone knows the future of this little child, as He knows the future of all the children, and men and women, who come to the Mission. We can have faith in His love and care for them.
Thank you for your gifts to the Mission. You enable us to provide food, shelter, and hope in our community. Thank you for being a Rescuer by helping us help others.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

All in a Day of Rescue!

One of our staff members once compared working at the Mission to experiencing Christmas every day. The truth is that we never know, when the doorbell rings, what blessings await us. Either gifts coming in to help us help others, or people in need whom we can help. The following list was made by one of the men who work at our men's shelter. Below is his description of a few highlights from his day.
How God Uses His People to Provide for His Children
Saturday, December 7, 2013
  • Panera provided 30 sandwiches, 3 specialty salads, pickles, and bread. It was an order that wasn't picked up. This was eaten that day for lunch.
  • A man gave 2 turkeys, flour, sugar, and some canned goods. His father was an alcoholic, came to the Mission program. The family was grateful for the City Rescue Mission.
  • A husband and wife gave blankets and bests in remembrance of their son who died.
  • A man brought 10 new hooded sweatshirts.When he purchased these, he told them what he was going to do with them. They gave him "No Charge" for 5 of the shirts. He also gave a gift of $100 and said he would be back on Monday with more shirts.
  • A mother dropped off 4 bags of coats and gloves, a lot of them new. Her daughter put out signs at Central Michigan University about collecting coats to be given to the Mission.
  • A lady gave a large bag of new stuffed animals, plus 2 bags with food and toiletries.
Every one of these people gave with joy and very large smiles.
God is Good!
In addition to these gifts coming in, we were able to provide food, shelter, and hope to about 150 women, children, and men that night. Indeed, God is good, and we are truly blessed by our great community of fellow Rescuers!