Friends, spring time is here. We will soon be celebrating Easter and preparing for the summer. It’s hard to believe; it seems like last week we were preparing for our Community Christmas Meal. Time doesn’t slow down and neither does the pain in our community. The first three months of this year have seen Living Free expand into two local churches with recovery meetings that have given folks a chance to be a part of a church. From inside the county jail, to the state prison, to 3 local churches, plus meetings at our campus, we now have 17 meetings going on each week! We have already helped or directed over 30 folks into a residential program such as the Home Of Grace. We will feed over 13,000 meals this year; that number is up 1000 from last year. We have been able to share in many local churches already. It’s been a very busy year so far and we are just getting started!
We are working hard every week to educate our team more about addiction so that we can help more people find the freedom from it. We have a deep belief that The Lord Jesus Christ will and can change anyone’s life. We believe that once that journey starts, that a person needs to be in local support groups, a local church, and they need to learn to become a giver. Within Living Free, we now have a program that we call “Doing Life Together”. In this program, I will take someone for 10-12 weeks and spend at least 6 days a week with them and sometimes 7 days. They will go and do everything that I do every day. This consists of lots of groups, bible studies, and they get 20 hours of work a week, plus they are learning how to get back into society. This program has already seen great results from the 3 men who have completed it. Teaching them how to go to work, teaching them to be on time or just taking them to a ballgame has been a major turn around for these guys. We also call it accountability. We love everything we get to do! It is your giving that allows Living Free to keep the doors open.
We will be doing a month-long addiction awareness campaign in May. We will be doing some advertising on what we do, who we are, and why we need your help. We would love to come into local churches during the month of May and share. May 14th is Mother’s Day. That day would be a great day to invite Polly Johnson, our Women’s Director, to come and share her story. We would love for you or your group to feed one of the meals in May, either on a Monday or a Thursday night.
We want to take this month and open your eyes to what Living Free really is. We love the ministry side of Living Free, but there is still the business side. It takes money to do what we do on a daily basis. We are behind almost $15,000 on giving this year, and we have spent more money than we did by last year at this time. It doesn’t take a math teacher to see that it could become a problem soon.
We need your help. In the month of May, we are going to be raising money to catch us up and also to put us ahead. We have never done a fundraiser, but we will be doing lots of community awareness in May. Also, Polly will share the first Thursday night, and I’ll share the last one.
I ask that you pray on giving now, giving monthly, and also pray about giving a Love Offering in May. We get to help lots of folks, and now we need you to help Living Free.