To the Editor,
Thursday, June 21, is a day I will never forget. Before walking into city hall that evening I knew my emotions had been on a rollercoaster for over two months, and I really had no idea how this night was going to turn out. This plan was never ours for the new shelter, it was and is a plan laid on our hearts to pursue for God and His people. I needed to focus my heart knowing God is always in control no matter what we face, He is with us.
I remember a reporter, who followed this story from early on, told me this had been the most touching story they had covered and when they heard it had passed, they were moved beyond words. For a reporter not to have words, well that speaks volumes.
I was also surprised when one of God’s people I did not know came to the podium to speak this same night. She had been through our program before my arrival and to hear her story I felt God’s presence in that room. I felt her sorrow and rejoiced in her new beginnings. When she stepped down I stood up and hugged her. I told her that even though I did not know her, I loved her, and would be there any time she may need us.
I could never have the strength that I have seen through those who walk through our doors of hope. Then again maybe I could through them. I do know, that my life has been touched by those who have and will continue to come through our doors of hope far more than I could ever touch their lives. Maybe God knew that when he called me and many others to this ministry.
As I drove up Spring Street after the approval vote Thursday night I probably broke a noise ordinance by blowing my horn to alert our residents of the joy I felt at that moment. So be it, God’s people had united, made a difference, and who better to celebrate with than family.
I have seen the joy, seen the rain, felt the love and felt the pain. God reminds each of us that our road is not easy, but He is always with us, and that through Him, anything is possible.
We are also thankful for each of you that have followed us during this time and the many other times we have needed you. For the last 15 years you have come to this little house on Rockford Street and embraced us and loved us with such abundance. We will never stop needing you to carry out God’s work and to spread His love.
We will continue to unite in making a difference in the lives of others and our community through restoring hope and rebuilding lives.
From our house to yours, the root of joy is gratefulness, it is not joy that makes us feel grateful. It is gratitude that makes us joyful.
The Shepherd’s House