The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned. –Isaiah 9:2
On October 11, D.J. was installed as a Special Minister in a service at New Song Anabaptist Fellowship. He is now credentialed by Virginia Mennonite Conference.
For the past two months, I’ve been facilitating a regular recovery meeting at Gemeinschaft Home. I’ve now started a new, weekly meeting to teach the guys about the Twelve Steps, which provide important tools for staying clean and sober. I’m working with the staff to arrange an evening meeting for the men who work day shift.
I’ve been working with two men recently released from incarceration.
My wife Carrie and I facilitated healing and deliverance prayer with two women who asked for help. We have more sessions scheduled.
I’m looking for a location to restart face-to-face meetings, and I’m waiting to hear about a location at a local church that is in a great location.
By my estimate, we have raised about 25% of the ministry’s budget for the year. Thank you to all who have helped!
I also want to acknowledge my awesome Ministry Support Team, to whom I am very grateful.
The Newsletter Quandary
How do I write a newsletter about a ministry in which people don’t want their problems publicized? I’d love to tell you the stories of the people I’m working with, but that’s not fair to them. But I can share anonymous details about a situation, changing names and ensuring that there is no identifiable information.
I wish I could do more. The heartbreak of seeing someone seemingly mired in addiction can only be countered by the joy of working with someone who demonstrates hope and success.
I can tell you that people coming out of incarceration and into recovery see their first challenge as becoming financially stable. They need jobs, and they need housing. Finding a place to stay in Harrisonburg isn’t easy when you have a record, and I understand why they spend so much time worrying.
While that is important, I consistently remind them that they need tools to take the place of substances in their lives. Otherwise, when crisis hits, they only have one tool available– the one that got them in trouble in the first place.
Recently, a man came to me and said, “I realize that alcohol was my solution, and I need different solutions or I’m going to drink again.” It was the first real conversation we had about recovery!
It’s moments like these that maintain my hope– and remind me that I am an example of someone who by the grace of God got clean and sober.
As winter approaches, I ask for prayers for all who have lost health and loved ones to Covid.
I also ask for prayers for those who struggle with addiction. In this time of increased isolation and uncertainty, alcohol sales and drug overdoses have risen dramatically, but helping those who suffer has become more difficult as services have moved online. Experience suggests that people are uncomfortable sharing their troubles with someone they haven’t looked in the eye face to face.
Thank you for supporting my ministry to people recovering from addiction! Your prayers, wisdom, and financial support make a difference.