At one mission, a youth group of about 75 students had just shared some special music before Tim was to speak for the evening chapel. The man introducing Tim, asked the men in the audience how many of them had grown up in church. To our surprise, over half of the 200 men raised their hands. The man then turned to the youth choir and said, “It’s all about choices. These men did not plan on sitting out in the seats here in the mission. They were just like you. It was the choices they made and the friends they surrounded themselves with when they were your age.” Even though Tim’s talk was geared toward the men in the mission, It set the stage for the students to do more than listen to Tim’s talk, but also to respond and recommit.
What you may not know about Rescue Missions:
- Years ago, the average person in the mission was male and in his late 50’s. Today the average in most missions is in the 30’s, with many more women and children. The people in the mission are more educated, many have lost white collar jobs, and don’t quite seem to fit the stereotype many people have of the homeless.
- Most missions feed the hungry in the community and house overnight clients, but many of the missions today go beyond by having an 8 – 12 month discipleship program. This program implements mentoring, counseling, discipleship, volunteer service work, and accountability with substance abuse when needed. The next phase includes help with GED and further education, resume building, employment and budgeting. The transitional phase builds independence and prepares them to be a contributing member of society.
- Volunteers at the mission come in all ages, shapes, and sizes. We’ve worked with husband and wife teams, families, church groups, business groups and retirees. Mission staff members include many from the corporate world coming to add their expertise to help the ministry expand.
- For most of the missions, the finances come from donations, and not government aid. Missions are cleaner, with better facilities and food, than many people would expect.
Where are all the cows? Isn’t this supposed to be the dairy state? spoken by Dixie in Wisconsin
80 mph - actual speed limit in parts of Utah
Occasional Blinding Dust Storms” sign in Utah
“Honey, I think I just missed a toll” as Dixie cruised past a tollway in near Chicago, Illinois. (This was later squared online)
$79.95 – amount paid in tolls throughout the trip (yes, this includes the online toll payment)
“STORIES THAT INSPIRE
Fourteen years ago, one man was on the verge of losing his marriage and was physically ill from years of substance abuse. His roommate, depressed, was trying to convince him that they should both commit suicide and end their struggles. The maintenance man at his job gave him a Bible and told him about the mission. The man went home and opened the Bible. it automatically fell to II Peter chapter 1, in which it says that God’s power gives us everything we need. It goes on to say that we have God’s promises to escape the “corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” He found God that night! The next day, he went to the mission, volunteered to help in the kitchen, and when they asked who would like to share before the meal, he raised his hand. They handed him a Bible and he spoke about the only passage he knew – in II Peter. That motivated him to go home every night and study the Bible so he would have more to share. This is a great lesson to those of us who have been raised in Biblical knowledge, yet because of fear, do not share the “Good News.”
So, we see it is all about choices. We can choose to be with people who are going in the wrong direction. We can choose to experiment with things we feel won’t really affect us long term. We can choose to stay in a dysfunctional relationship. OR…. We can make a choice to get out of a bad situation. We can make a choice to use our PAST to help someone else’s FUTURE. We can make a choice to give a Bible to someone. We can make a choice to notice someone who needs help. And we can make a choice to do something about it.
Thanks for taking this journey with us…
So…catch the vision
Feel our heart
Join the movement
As we SERVE ACROSS AMERICA!