One of the ministries Mercy Church is partnering with for this Serve Week is New Strength Homes (NSH). This is a ministry I have been personally involved with for three years and have been privileged to be part of some of the life changing events that have occurred. I have seen God work in unusual ways to better the lives of children and those mentored in residence at NHS.
The current young woman I mentor is 29 years old and she has four children under the age of 11. She is a single mother and is the sole provider for her children. When I first started mentoring her we had trust issues, anger, feelings of abandonment and fear, to work through. In addition she had just given birth to her fourth child and had been living on the street in her car prior to going to Florence Crittenton Home, and from there after the birth to NSH. So all of these feelings were understandable, but ones she needed to overcome.
Over the past two years we have met on a weekly basis to work on all of these issues to help equip her for success in the future. We have developed a relationship based on God and his love for all of us and how His love can overcome anything we face. After we had established our mentor/mentee relationship we began to work on practical things like: raising children, meal planning, financial responsibility, what a healthy man/woman relationship centered on Christ looks like. During the past two years our relationship has grown, and I have been privileged to watch as she finally is allowing God to love her like He desires to love all of His children. Not only have I been blessed to watch her begin to grow in her walk with Christ but I have also been able to share God’s love and gift of salvation with her oldest child.
So many of us take for granted the gifts of shelter, food, jobs, transportation and support of family and friends that we need to remind ourselves that all of these are gifts from God. When I watch this young woman and her tenacity and commitment to all of the hard work, sacrifices and tireless days I am amazed. I have to step back and look at all the things God has done for me. I stand in awe of his blessings and fall on my face and say THANK YOU for YOUR LOVING GRACE and MERCY in my life that I don’t deserve.
New Strength Homes not only provides me with an opportunity to serve but it also keeps me closer to my Jesus because I know He is the fountain of all blessings.
“We love Him because He first loved us.” 1 John 4:19. Our ability to love Him and others comes from that intimate relationship we have when God is our foundation. Ultimately the goal of NSH is that all of the residents would believe and live this verse daily.