I can Rebuild my Life
Robert had a job, an apartment, a car and health care. Life in Dallas was good. He couldn’t have imagined it was all about to crumble around him.
“I lost my job. My insurance premium and medications got too expensive. My car broke down a number of times. My rent was going up. I had to vacate,” he says. “My whole world came unglued.” He returned to his hometown of Shreveport hoping to find work, but to no avail. “I didn’t have the funds to stay anywhere,” he say. “I was in shock and trauma. I though, “I’m homeless. I’m going to be forgotten.”
With “an empty heart and life,” Robert came to the Shreveport-Bossier Rescue Mission. But through daily devotions, chapels and a caring staff, he found reason to hope once again. “Every day is an opportunity to trust and believe that God wants what’s best for me,” he says. “God has a future and a hope for everyone, including those impacted by homelessness.”
Robert, who has worked as a pharmacy technician and done clerical work, has honed his customer service skills working at our Help Desk. “I was able to get a part-time job as a musician for a church, which helps me with a little bit of income,” he says.
Now that he’d found a full-time position, Robert has moved into his own place and plans to go back to college to complete his degree in music. “The Mission has given me the opportunity to start my life over,” he says.
Because of your support, Roberts and other like him, find help and hope when they walk through the doors of the Shreveport-Bossier Rescue Mission. “I know that God’s divine favor and mercy brought me here,: he says. “I can go out on my own once again and rebuild my life.”
The Mission has got this Light burning Inside me Again
Divorced after an abusive marriage, Kristie worked hard to ensure her little girl had everything she needed. “Being a single mom, I gave her all my love and attention,” Kristie says, “We were doing fine.”
Then the unthinkable happened.
After dropping off her daughter at school, Kristie was rear-ended and suffered injuries to her neck and back. Her doctor prescribed medication to ease her ongoing pain. “And that’s where everything went wrong,” she shares.
Soon she depended on the painkillers to function: ” I had to keep going for my daughter.” Then gradually the drugs tore her life apart. “Every bit of money I had went to buy them,” she says. She cut herself off from her friends and couldn’t hold a job. Finally, she and her daughter had no choice but to move in with her parents.
But Kristie knew she needed more than a place to stay if she was going to get her back on track. Leaving her daughter in her parents’ care, she came to the Shreveport-Bossier Rescue Mission and joined the Discipleship Program portion of the Life Recovery Program. “Being here has really got me to focus on what’s important – my relationship with God and knowing He’s with me every step of the way,” she says.
She maintains a close relationship with her daughter, who has graduated from high school and now encourages Kristie in her life-skills classes here at the Mission. And Kristie enjoys her vocational training assignment in our Distribution Center, where she feels blessed by many opportunities to talk with people and touch their lives with her story.
Today, Kristie called the Mission and feels the thrill of hope in her heart when she thinks about the future. “I will be the first women joining the Ministry Internship Program to continue my growth, my learning and to help other ladies when they come through the door,” she says. “My life isn’t over like I thought it was!”
Everything just Fell Apart
Gary worked in the oil fields all his life. He married, had three great sons and raised his family. But along the way, he lost it all to drugs and alcohol.
“The oil fields are full of and alcohol, methamphetamine, and I was drinking every day. Finally, it came to the point where I couldn’t keep a job. My wife couldn’t take it anymore, and everything just fell apart.”
“In the end, I had nowhere to go.” Gary had tried to get off drugs and alcohol before several times by himself and once in a drug rehab program that “didn’t work.
It was Gary’s ex-wife who brought him to the Mission, and within a week, he entered our Life Recovery Program.
“I came in with just the clothes on my back. They gave me good clothes. I was able to eat three meals a day-something I hadn’t been doing. They gave me a roof over my head. I was diagnosed with depression and they helped me get medicine. Eventually, with the Mission’s support and the Lord’s guidance, was able to get off that medicine.
Gary had never keen “religious”. “Through the teachers and the classes and reading the Bible, I learned that the Lord forgave me. If Jesus Christ can forgive me, I ought to be able to forgive myself.”
Working in the oil fields was the only job Gary had ever known. But he knew he couldn’t return ad risk addiction again. When he began working in the kitchen as part of his vocational training, he found a new calling that prepared him in his present job at a meat packing plant. “The whole program was excellent for me,” Gary says. “I’m working. I’m rebuilding relationships with my children”, and they’re very proud and supportive. “I just hope I can give back the Mission something of what they’ve given me!”