Sleep Out 2022!
Ruth 1:16 Ruth replied, “Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.”
One of the most important and cherished jobs I have had in my life is being a mother, a foster mother, an adoptive mother and a mother-in-law.Ruth is one of the greatest examples of commitment, honor and love that I have seen.There are a few stories in the Bible of several people that are woven together so closely that they are almost inseparable.We know more about their relationship than we know about them as individuals.Naomi and Ruth are a beautiful example of this blending of lives.Their cultures, family backgrounds and ages were very different.As mother- in- law and daughter-in-law they probably had as many opportunities for tension as tenderness, and yet they were bound to each other.They shared deep sorrow, great affection for each other and an overriding commitment to the God of Israel. And yet as much as they depended on each other, they also gave each other freedom in their commitment to one another. Naomi was willing to let Ruth return to her family. Ruth was willing to leave her homeland to go to Israel. But she had a commitment to her husband that passed and to her newfound God, the God of Israel. Ruth came to know the God of Israel through Naomi. The older woman allowed Ruth to see, hear, and feel all the joy and anguish of her relationship to God. This was such a power testimony to me that I included Ruth’s words in my wedding vows to Inell. Ruth 1: 16 “Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.” How often do we share our unedited thoughts about God with our spouse or friends? In our Bridge of Hope Ministry, we are able to share this same bonding with our families. Because of a large gift from First Presbyterian Church of Bordentown, we currently have 4 families in the program. 1 mom and child are about to graduate in a few months. 1 mom just gave birth to twins after considering abortion. Babies are doing good but still in the hospital. Our single dad with 3 children has finally gotten in an affordable apartment. The children are loving their new school and their dad is looking at a new job because he’s stable. Our newest mom is a new mom that came to BOH at risk of homelessness due to reduction of hours at her place of employment. They have found an apartment and now mom is going back to school so she can get a better job. We now can minister to each other and their children, just like Naomi did for Ruth. We can show them our God in our words and deeds, and you can join us too! We have a few ways to directly minister to these families and families to come. We are putting together neighboring teams. Teams could be from one church, Bible study, ladies or men’s groups, etc. We have a paid social worker who will train everyone and does the budgeting, life skills, etc.; while the team can write encouraging notes, send cards, and have a monthly event with the families. Next month we are having our annual “Sleep Out Fundraiser for Bridge of Hope” on May 20, 2022 (at a church to be announced). This is a way to ensure that we raise the needed funds to keep going and to get your whole family involved. You can come and sleep in your car at the church or in your driveway, you can pitch a tent on your front lawn and then when your neighbors come and ask what you are doing, you can witness to them. You can have a sleep over with your kids or grandchildren in your living room. The idea is to get sponsorships to donate to our Bridge of Hope program. Your help is really needed at this critical time, as food prices and inflation are on the rise, with our families that are allowing God to mold their lives back to what He has intended for them to prosper. Thank you for sharing your prayers, time and financial gifts to spread this wonderful Gospel to the people we serve at the Christian Caring Center.
Abiding in Him,