Ginger never imagined that one day she would have to come to a rescue mission. When Ginger was in college her brother committed suicide. He had struggled with mental illness and his death devastated her family. Ginger helped her family pick up the pieces but never really dealt with the pain of her loss. “I never sat down. I guess I cried but I don’t really remember emotionally grieving.”
After college, Ginger got married, had children, and became a teacher. Life seemed good until her husband filed for divorce after 20 years of marriage. “Things began to fall apart and I’m just, God, why are you letting this happen. And I didn’t have any support to say, it’s OK. I was in a church that once I was divorced they were hands-off.”
As Ginger got older, she found more and more teaching opportunities being handed to younger teachers. She never struggled with addiction or the things we associate with homelessness but in 2017, she found herself homeless living at a Salvation Army in Tyler.
She had heard of the Mission from when she had lived in Shreveport and decided to make her way to Shreveport. Ginger wanted to find work and join our Employed Program but God kept pressing her to join the New Beginnings Program. Even though God was pressing her to join a long term program, Ginger continued to search for jobs. Interview after interview, job search after job search, God kept closing that door. She finally decided to surrender to what God wanted her to do. She joined the New Beginnings Program and her life began to take a turn for the better. Ginger graduated from our New Beginnings Program and felt a call on her life to help other women in need.
She then joined the Mission’s Ministry Intern Program, graduated, and is now an employee on the Women’s Guest Services Team. “I’ve always felt called into ministry and I always said no because of my family. But here’s my second chance.” Now, Ginger has moved from surviving to thriving. She continued to use her story and testimony to help encourage other women in need. “Before coming to the Mission I was weary. Now, I am refreshed.”