30 April 2010

Encouragement through Graduation

After listening to our men and women speak about their past and future in Christ, I was given a great gift. Sometimes our ministry can be discouraging, so I lose track of the glorious successes and can see only the failures.

Bill W., after much prayer and in-sight gained from fighting his own demons, composed the AA 12 Step Program (based on Scripture). His premise was identified by 4 particular challenges and the chronological progression, if followed; making peace with God, with others, then with self. The final step is to carry this message to others, who don’t know the miracle of a relationship with Jesus Christ.

This resounded loud and clear through the thoughts of our graduates. I continue to encourage my men to dream and to laugh, but most importantly, to know that God is at our side. He will meet you where you are. My Father did exactly that with me.

Hallelujah and amen!

Mike King
Garland Thompson Men's Center
Journey to Work Coordinator

29 April 2010

Changed Life

A Facebook friend recently posted ‘Good weekend; I love being able to see His hand everywhere I turn’. Her post best describes why I love serving at Open Door Mission, for everything – even the hard days - is from God’s direction.

My new responsibility as Compliance Director is to process housing applications for Lydia House. Our facility fills up quickly. On days we don’t have room, our staff gives referrals to our Timberlake Outreach Center for case management, supplies, and food pantries. We also give referrals to other shelters and agencies in the community. When we do have room, it’s an honor to set someone up in their new room or apartment. Our Lydia House staff always has a room cleaned, stocked with care-products and towels, beds made with fresh linens, and topped with a Bible and a welcome note. It always seems like God’s hand is orchestrating all moving in and out to provide safe shelter for those families with no where else to turn. With our new facility, we are better able to serve families including single parents.

I don’t see the people much, once they move in. My office is tucked away in a quiet corner. However when I do, I often do not recognize them. It is amazing the transformation that takes place in a mom’s face when she does not have to worry about where her family will stay the night or if there will be food to eat. My goodness, the change that occurs when someone gives their life to Christ and through one of our Life-Changing programs.

Last Saturday, seventeen men and women graduated from our New Life and Journey to Work programs. With joy, I watched one woman walk down the aisle in her cap and gown beaming with confidence in her new life. Just a year before, she often knocked on my office door, checking to see if any bunks had opened up. All I would see was her deep-set- eyes and too-thin face staring out from under her worn hoodie. Now she walks tall as she heads off to work, serves in her church, and enjoys her extended family – whom are no longer in hiding. They are free of their bondage. Only God’s hand could guide this change.

I encourage you to come down and serve with us at Lydia House. We currently need volunteers to man our reception area, clean and set up rooms for new guests, assist families with weekly shopping needs at the Timberlake Outreach Center, and stock and organize our supply closets. In addition, we have a host of other rewarding volunteer positions that allow you to ‘see His hand everywhere your turn’.

God Bless,
Ronda Nelson
Compliance Director

27 April 2010

A Letter

Several months ago, one of our New Life Program participants left for reasons that did not seem to make sense. She was someone who had struggled with drugs and alcohol for many years and desperately wanted to be free. I can not help but have deep connections with my clients so it was very hard to see her leave and give up on the program. I always wondered what would happen to her and prayed for her. However, today I received a letter from her!!

I cried as I read how she had relapsed and had gone to jail but desperately wanted to come back to Open Door Mission. However, what hit me the most was she went on about how she has tried for so many years to be free from drugs and alcohol and no one else has treated her like the Mission. She thanked many staff directly in her letter.

Then, she said, “You helped me see a future that I would have not seen or. And I know you always had my best interest at heart”.

I thought…wow!! I only spent a little time with her but God allowed me to show this girl that she has a FUTURE!

God allows the volunteers and staff to have a huge impact on the people who are deeply hurt and wounded. No matter where we work in the Mission or where we volunteer we all have a part of giving our participants a FUTURE!

Praise the lord!
Alicia Riskowski
Lydia House Recovery Case Manager

26 April 2010

Lydia House Success Story

I just want to say I have really enjoyed being in the new Lydia House building. It is so nice…big…but really nice. If I needed a place to stay, this would be my first choice. I have been sharing with my daughter how great it is and she has decided to attend Bible Day Camp this summer. She got to see the inside of the Lydia House before we left for vacation. We had a wonderful time but I missed being at work. We have really come far from when we were in the other building, and I believe all the people have adjusted to the move very well. I wish, sometimes, that this building had been available when I was going through the program, but I’m glad I have my own place.

Some of our ladies have been sharing their stories with me – why they’re here and how the program has helped them. I have also shared my story with them how I’m back on my feet, able to have my own place, a full-time job, and am closer to God. My daughter has also benefitted from the program. Though, she wishes she was still here to go to the tutoring lab and get help with her homework.

I also want to thank all of the staff here at Open Door Mission for believing in me and giving me a job that I truly enjoy. Thanks, everyone.

Sharon Ford
Lydia House Support Worker

24 April 2010

A Dog’s Work is Never Done

My name is Christy. My mom works at the Open Door Mission and since I go everywhere with her, I go with her to the Timberlake Outreach Center. People are surprised to see me - - sometimes even scared of me for a moment! You see, I am my mom’s Certified Hearing Dog. My mom is deaf and wanted independence from loud bells and flashing lights at home and she also wanted to feel more safe there and in the community hence me.

As a puppy, I was homeless and rescued from the Seattle, Washington Animal Shelter by an Oregon Dogs for the Deaf worker who saw potential in me. From the shelter, I was sent to a foster home where I received a comprehensive medical and overall behavioral evaluation, before being accepted to the Central Point, Oregon program. I trained there for nine months and then my trainer and I flew to Omaha so mom and I could become acquainted. We all worked as a team for four days, then my trainer said goodbye, and mom and I became a team for life.

I am always on duty, as my job is to be mom’s ears and alert her if there’s change in the sounds of our routine. I get to watch mom and her co-workers as they meet with many people throughout the day. They pray with folks for jobs, health issues and healed relationships. Everyone is happy when we have what clothing, furnishings, diapers and food they need! I see mom and the Timberlake Outreach Center staff always praying for many of gently used items for the clients of Timberlake Outreach Center.

Everyone always thinks they have the best job at Open Door Mission. I do, too, because I get to see firsthand, God impacting lives at Timberlake Outreach Center! Because my life was spared when I was rescued, not only can I relate to how special a place Open Door Mission is - - I also help people. I get petted and I bring smiles, loving memories of pets, and comfort to others by my presence! So if you see me around, don’t be startled or scared - - I’m here to help, too!

Blessings,
Kelli Young “Mom”
Community Case manager

23 April 2010

Weekend Events

Well, spring is here and we can feel it here at Lydia House. Everyone is happier, more active, and loving the weather. Seeing the kids playing outside in our new play area is so much fun.
On April 17th and 18th, I was at Kidz Explore. It was so great playing games with kids and giving away toys and balloons that share the message of Jesus. You cannot put a price on being able to share the Gospel whether it is at an event like this or everyday at Lydia House.

Saturday, April 24th we are having our Volunteer Fair and I am looking forward to meeting current and new volunteers who want to bless Open Door Mission. We are also having a cap and gown graduation for those in our life-changing programs. We have 17 graduates that will be giving their testimonies and celebrating their success with family, friends, and Open Door Mission partners. This is truly the best day to be working here at the Mission. To see those who have dedicated their lives to Christ and growing in all areas of their lives, is a blessing beyond measure.

I truly hope to see you at one of our events this weekend.

Blessings,
Charity Watts
Lydia House Director

22 April 2010

Timberlake Outreach Center

The first quarter of 2010 has shown that the number of people who are coming to Open Door Mission for services has continued to increase. The word is out that people who are in extreme crises or nearly homeless are coming to the Timberlake Outreach Center for help. Every day people come to the Mission to receive clothing, household items, furniture, food pantries, and diapers.

Many people also take advantage of our free Life Skills classes at the Timberlake Learning Center. Numerous students are enrolled in our GED classes. In our ESL (English as a second language) classes we have a number of people whose first language is Spanish, Burmese, Karen, and French. We also provide Budgeting, Parenting, and Computer classes at our Learning Center. These classes are enabling our clients to work towards providing a better life for themselves and their children.

I am so grateful, in spite of our difficult economic times, we have people like you who continue to give to Open Door Mission. Your gifts and donations are helping to keep thousand of families in their homes and you are helping us fight the battle of homelessness, one family at a time. Thank you for partnering with us to help prevent homelessness. We couldn’t do it with out you.

Joyfully serving Jesus,
Judy Collins
Director of the Timberlake Outreach Center

21 April 2010

Spring Cleaning

My day at work begins with team prayer, and moves into making a daily plan to help people get the items they desperately need for their homes. At the Timberlake Outreach Center, we get to work with community clients that are struggling to get by day to day and remain in their homes. We have a great “free-clothing” program called Kings Kloset. People come in and register with us before 10:30 a.m., Monday through Friday, and then sit in Chapel to hear God's word for 30 minutes. Once Kings Kloset Chapel time is over, the people that registered get to one hour to “shop” for free clothing, shoes, toys and household items!

In addition to Kings Kloset, we also offer Emergency Furniture Assistance. Once every 6 months, people can come in and meet with a Resource Case Manager who determines their needs and helps them get the items they need when available.

Maybe you already knew this about the Timberlake Outreach Center? Perhaps you knew that everything we have is donated and we give it freely to those we serve?

Next time you are doing some spring cleaning or making room for new furniture, would you consider giving your unwanted items to Open Door Mission so another family might be blessed? Most of the families receiving assistance are on a fixed income, and do not have extra money for furniture items. Daily we are asked for basics: beds, dressers, couches, recliners, refrigerators, stoves, washers and dryers. It’s such a blessing to serve those families in need and give them things that they truly need to manage.

If you have furniture or appliance items you would be willing to donate please call 829-1517 and we would be happy to schedule an appointment for pick-up. If you can bring the donations down yourself, that would be even better! Open Door Mission's Receiving Area is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturdays, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. If you live in West Omaha, you can bring your donations to A+ Williamson Automotive located at 14911 A Circle, Monday — Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Blessings,
Amy Springer
Assistant Director of Timberlake Outreach Center

20 April 2010

Greetings from Lydia House!

It is amazing to think we’ve been in our fabulous new facility for nearly 3 months now. In some ways, it seems as if even been here longer, because the work of ministering to those God has brought to Lydia House never skipped a beat. We packed up offices and residents rooms, moved in and continued to meet needs. God has enlarged our dwelling space and at the same time enlarged the habitations of our hearts for the increased numbers of women and families we are now able to serve. He is so amazing!

I drive by the front of our new building, rejoicing at its beauty and the dignity every square inch represents. My eyes still well up, when I get to give a new resident (who is uncertain, scared and often traumatized) a tour of their temporary "home." I watch them relax ever so slightly. I am still thrilled when I see the eyes of a child light up as I take them to our spacious Bright Space, youth rooms and tutoring lab. My heart still fills with pride in the resiliency demonstrated by our guests, who cooperate with one another to cook a group Easter dinner, and prepare eggs for dyeing with their children in our wonderful guest kitchens.

I hope you find time to contact our volunteer department to schedule a tour and come visit us so you too can stand in awe of what God has done. He is transforming lives in Women and Family ministries at Lydia House.

God's abundant blessings of grace be yours,
Laurie Armes
Lydia House Recovery Services Coordinator

19 April 2010

Success Story-One of Many

A few days ago, representing Open Door Mission at a Diversity Fair at Iowa Western Community College, I had the blessing of seeing a former client and his wife. Tracy had graduated from Open Door Mission’s New Life Recovery program about three years before. I had Tracy in a class I taught-he was determined to make the most of his second chance. His wife said she credits Open Door Mission for helping him get back on the right path. They are both attending school. Tracy will graduate in December, his wife this summer. Tracy plans to go on to Buena Vista to complete a four year degree. What is his final goal? Tracy wants to come back and work at Open Door Mission, so he can help other men that are hoping and searching for a better life with freedom from addictions and destructive behaviors.

Thanks to Open Door Mission, Tracy has a full and blessed life with a goal of helping others. His marriage is restored and strong. He and his wife are active and involved in their church and in a common desire to help others. Tracy is just one of the many success stories of Open Door Mission, where lives are changed every day. Would you like to be a part of someone’s success story? You can be by volunteering or donating to Open Door Mission. You can choose to make the difference in the lives of men, women and children with a simple phone call. The best part-your life will be changed also.

Maggie Cope
Communications Coordinator

17 April 2010

Learning Center

Great things are happening in our Learning Center. This program has expanded to include more men and women—teaching them those academic skills that once seemed lost, like fractions, decimals and grammar. I get questions like, “I’ll never use fractions, why should I learn them?” and “Why should I learn to type? I never had to use it in any of the jobs I’ve done.”

The Learning Center is all about development to prepare one to adjust to the job market as economies change and new challenges are presented. A new skill is like gold on a resume and job application. Someone could say they can type, write and talk with confidence.

It is exciting to see the changes God brings about in the hearts of men and women. Each of us is one of God’s Masterpieces and it us up to us to develop what He’s given us. I want to be that “help” to show men and women the potential they have, with Christ as their Savior.

Deb Champion
Learning Center Director

16 April 2010

The Heart of Volunteers

Open Door Mission is truly blessed with a great base of volunteers. God provides the number of people we need to operate and thrive as a ministry in Omaha. The blessing does not cease here, however. He proceeds to not only provide a multitude of workers, but also the “cream of the crop.” Our volunteers don’t come down and trudge through their toil, complaining and whining about the task at hand. They are excited to serve and ready to put the pedal to the metal. Everyone may not come down ready to clean up a muddy area, but they do it anyway. Open Door Mission volunteer assignments may not direct you to wear warm clothing for work in a freezer, but they blaze through the frosty time sorting, moving, and hustling. Scrubbing shelves wasn’t in their play book, but it is handled like it was.

Our volunteers don’t only cook and serve food. They do EVERYTHING. Whether they have face to face time with our guests or sort and organize food—it is time spent with a happy heart. We love the spirit with which they serve, and we thank them and the Lord for sending them. So, I guess this is a shout out to all the hard working peeps we get down here. THANKS and GOD BLESS YOU!!!!.


Taylor Clinch
Volunteer and Partner Associate

15 April 2010

Front Lines

It is a great blessing to be on staff at Open Door Mission. As a van driver, I transport the people who are staying with us, taking them from the Mission to downtown Omaha and back. My position allows me to be one of the first staff members that our guests come in contact with. I view this as an opportunity to give them a good first impression of the Mission, and of serving our Lord Jesus Christ!

I enjoy meeting new people, and my position gives me this great opportunity. Here at Open Door Mission, we want to provide our guests what they need for their spirit, soul and body. We greatly appreciate all the ways that you—donors and volunteers in our community—assist us in helping to make it all possible. The staff at the Mission cannot do this service without you. Thank you so much for giving and partnering with us, and may the Lord richly bless you!

David Eischeid
Shuttle Driver

14 April 2010

Unexpected Blessings

Just wanted to share with you a blessing we received at Timberlake Outreach Center last week. We had a great group from PayPal volunteer for their second time. When they were here in March, I had a discussion with some of them about how nice it would be to have the clothing sorted and organized by size then people could find what they needed more easily during their shopping time. I explained to them how awesome it would be, but that it would take a good amount of time and manpower. We are blessed to have so many donations come in that often, we are just trying to stay one step ahead of all the items. We don’t always have time to do more detailed work such as organizing by size.

Last Thursday night, PayPal showed up with a box full of size dividers and an enthusiastic attitude. They told me about their desire to size all the clothing racks in our store. They had contacted an individual at Omaha Fixture, inquiring about the cost of dividers. In response, the gentlemen donated a large box of these dividers to help their cause. It was really thoughtful on behalf of the PayPal workers and the man at Omaha Fixture and because of their generosity, Timberlake Outreach Center will be more organized. Shoppers will now have an easier experience finding the clothing they need.

I wanted to share this blessing with you and tell you that we have some awesome people who come through our doors to volunteer. I am amazed at the response people give when we tell them of a need we have, even when all we shared was a wish for a better way to do things.

With that said, the only clothing section in Timberlake Outreach Center that has yet to be sorted and organized by size is women’s pants, and it’s already proving to be a helpful and positive change here.

Nicole Ricley
Administrative Support Staff

13 April 2010

Open Door Mission’s Permanent Supportive Housing

I had the privilege of meeting a young man that was interested in our Permanent Supportive Housing. When I opened the door for him, he walked in with an unsteady gait. I showed him around and he was excited at the possibility of having his own place. He eventually moved in, and began to tell me a little more of his life’s story. One day he said, “My grandma raised me, because my mother was a drug addict and my father was in prison. She went to court to get me when I was a baby.” He paused then added, “Grandma died when I was 15 – she had been good to me.”

I asked him what happened after her death. He replied, “Some people got me, but they just used me for my money. They taught me to use drugs, but I don’t do that anymore.” He was looking out the window as if he was deep in thought. He stated, “Everyone always used me for money and they would take it from me.” He began to smile and said, “But not here, no one tries to take my money. I like living here. I have my own place, and everyone is good to me.”

He has epilepsy and cerebral palsy which has affected his speech and walk. However, now he finally feels he’s in the right place. He has Open Door Mission supporting him as he strives to reach his personal goals. We also encourage him to walk in the path that God has for his life. He walked in the office one day with a huge smile on his face and showed me some bills that he had just received. He said “I never paid them before, but I am going to now.”

God is always doing great things and He teaches us some of life’s lessons in the most amazing ways as seen through this young man’s life. When you are where God would have you, no matter what struggles there may be, you will know that you’re in the right place. Sometimes we may not feel it, but it is never too late to start when God puts it on your heart.

Jeannette Blackstone
Permanent Supportive Housing Director

12 April 2010

Night-Night from Marriott Reservation Center

Penny has encouraged the Marriott Reservation Center to support Open Door Mission with Hope Totes. This year, they decided on a new project. They will give the children of Lydia House Night-Night bags. Each of the 50 bags has a blanket, stuffed animal and bedtime story book. Marriott Reservation Center is so giving that they even had extra blankets and books to donate.

It will be a blessing to the families and children to receive something just for themselves — something comforting and full of hope. What better way is there to help hurting families heal than to encourage a bedtime ritual of cuddling and a story? Everyday people at Marriott help others find a place to find rest and comfort; so it’s only fitting that they provide rest and comfort to children and their families. Thank you to everyone at Marriott Reservation Center for making a difference and blessing the lives of the children at Lydia House.

Would you like to make a difference and bless the lives of others? Please contact me and I will be glad to assist you. We have a variety of ways you can help those less fortunate. Call me today – let’s work together to provide hope and change lives for a better community.

Maggie Cope
Communications Coordinator
(402) 829-1554

10 April 2010

Family Outings

Well it has been an exciting few days at Open Door Mission.

Thursday night, staff of Lydia House and Men’s Ministry, my husband and I were able to take over a hundred men, women, and families to see the Casting Crowns concert. I had so much fun working the volunteer booth and meeting people. I also saw many long time friends and supporters of the Mission. Everyone who went was so blessed by the music and message of the night.

Friday, I was at the Institute for Compassion presentation at their service center. This was a day of refection on how to be true and show compassion to others while reflecting the love of Christ. It has challenged me to quiet my spirit in such a hectic and busy world. Tonight our Lydia House families are going to the Rose Theater to enjoy a live play. What a blessing to be able to expose our families to life changing concerts and productions.

God Bless,

Charity Watts
Lydia House Director

08 April 2010

Fish, Fries and Mama’s Cookin’

Friday night was a special night in our kitchen. Freedom Christian Fellowship donated catfish so that we could have a fish fry. Well, I had the great pleasure to serve alongside these brothers and sisters in Christ. It was a real joy to prepare and serve the dinner meal with them.

‘Mama,’ as she is well known to her church family, and now to me, was our master fryer for the night. As soon as Pastor Ronnie brought the breaded catfish her way, she asked me to drop in the fish, “gently now as not to splash!”

I really enjoyed my time at the fryer with ‘Mama.’ We talked about her past cooking experience, what God was doing in our lives and what a blessing it was to see this fish multiplied to feed hundreds (like the parable in John 6:1-15).

Every day is a miracle here at Open Door Mission. We couldn’t do it without our special volunteers, donors, prayer partners and YOU!!

Patti Cummings
Volunteer Department
Administrative Assistant/Dispatcher


07 April 2010

Friends of the Friendless Spa Day

Tuesday was Spa Day at the monthly Friends of the Friendless meeting. There were haircuts, manicures, massages, pedicures, cosmetics and lotions, jewelry and even greeting cards for sale. Wait…not for sale! These enjoyable “pamperings” were given at no charge to the recipients.

Here at Open Door Mission we serve a wonderful, feminine population who haven’t spent much, if any, of their lives being pampered and coddled. In fact, circumstances of late have converged to make them homeless.

Also at Open Door Mission, we are joined by generous, caring professionals who are willing to donate their time and talents to make life a little softer, prettier and more fun for these ladies who wouldn’t otherwise get special “pampering”. The Friends of the Friendless were setting up, organizing, conversing with our clients, and sharing their smiles and love with everyone who participated.

That’s love in action; serving and asking nothing in return. That’s what the Friends of the Friendless do each month. This month they did it at Spa Day; next month they’ll set up items for our Annual Silent Auction. We sure are grateful for them. But after all, that’s what Friends are for!

Judy Ward
Friends of the Friendless Prayer Chairman

06 April 2010

God’s Business

I have been extremely blessed to a part of the team at Open Door Mission. When I first began working here last summer, I was a part of the Volunteer Department. I got to see an incredible amount of support from people in the community. I had the pleasure of working alongside individuals who wanted to be a part of the difference God is making here.

As soon as I became comfortable in that position, God began moving and preparing me for a different role. For the past two months now, I have been working in the Timberlake Outreach Center. I have continued to be blessed by volunteers who come and give their time so our ministry can continue. I have also been challenged and stretched in this new position and God is teaching me things I never could have learned elsewhere.

I truly believe that God is in the business of changing lives. Yes, of course, he wants to turn around the lives of the hurting, hungry, and homeless who are apart from Him. However, I also believe He wants to continue changing those of us who ‘do’ know Him and have accepted His gift of salvation. We just have to be ready and willing to say “yes” when He calls.

Thank you for your support of Open Door Mission and for allowing people like to me to work on behalf of Christ to reach those who need hope.

Nicole Ricley
Timberlake Outreach Center
Administrative Support Staff

05 April 2010

The Power of a Girl Scout!

Never under estimate the power of dedicated Girl Scouts. For their Community Bronze award Gracie, Cassidy, and Catriona from Girl Scout Troop 5437, decided to do something special for the children of Lydia House. They took old jeans and made them into carry bags. Then they filled 100 bags with personal care items and “fun stuff” like books, small games, and other special treats. They had collected so many items for the bags that they had boxes of items leftover to donate-over 400 pounds!

They took a tour of Open Door Mission with their parents and immediately began thinking of other ways for their whole troop to help. For Easter, the whole troop is making special Easter bags for all Open Door Mission clients. We are blessed to have these Girl Scouts who are making a difference in their community and in the lives of others. Would your scout troop like to get involved? Would you like to take tour of Open Door Mission to see how you can make a difference too? Would you like to do a drive or special project for Open Door Mission? Please call me and I will be happy to help you make a difference in the lives of others.

Maggie Cope
Communications Coordinator
(402) 829-1554

03 April 2010

One Left Standing

On my way to work this morning, up on the curb at the side of the road, stood a Canadian goose. It was standing guard over its mate, a few feet away, dead in the street. A victim of a driving hit, it was left on the road. For those that don’t know, Canadian geese mate for life. The mate was standing by, waiting for its companion to get up and get going.

I wanted to stop and protect the dead goose from further destruction! I wanted to scoop up the living goose and put it in my car and take it - where do you take a surviving goose? I wished there was someone there with me who would take charge and help out! Do you bury a goose? And then, what do you do with the surviving goose? Was I the first upon the scene? Who had hit this goose? Were the drivers in a hurry; perhaps late for work? How were they distracted to not see and hit a 20 lb. Canadian goose crossing the street? Maybe they were late for their flight out of Eppley Airfield, unfamiliar with the Canadian geese who populate this area and cross the streets daily. All of this was going through my head as I, too, had to get to work. There was only so much I could do. Yet I wondered, why did I have to see that? Why not an hour earlier, or an hour later? Anyone who knows me knows I’m a bit passionate about people and animals who are hurting. I’m also a bit emotional around this time of the year because it’s Easter, and Easter means so much to me.

As it was, a co-worker offered comforting words and helped call for Animal Control. My call was kindly accepted and they said they’d received a couple of calls, but didn’t find the goose at the intersection people had told them to go. I was able to provide the precise location where the mishap had occurred. I thank God Animal Control responds to these things, and they know what to do with the goose and the goose mate! That offered a measure of comfort to an otherwise upsetting way to start the day!

What happened this morning is a vivid example of what Easter is all about. Just as the goose wouldn’t leave the side of his/her mate - - I know that Jesus will never leave me nor forsake me! God sent His only Son to die for us and in doing so, Jesus became the Light and the Way to eternal salvation! Jesus came down from the cross and He rose on the third day! Jesus is our Comforter in our times of need and we can be reassured He hears the desires of our hearts. I pray you come to know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior. Easter Blessings as you Celebrate the Good News!

Kelli Young
Timberlake Outreach Center
Resource Case manager

02 April 2010

Trip to Chicago, a gentle reminder…

Recently, I had the opportunity to take a business trip to Chicago, IL. It was a wonderful opportunity to visit other Missions and shelters to gleam ideas from facilities that have gone through construction, renovation and demolition projects.

The highlight of my trip was arriving back in Omaha. When paying for my parking, the parking attendant said, “Candace is that you.” Amazing, the young lady giving me my change had been homeless a few years back and stayed at Lydia House. She went on to share that she had not been homeless since and has held down 2 jobs.

The next day, I received an email from her sharing more details: she was still clean and sober, going to college part time and involved in a local church. This was so exciting to hear.

Great facilities and programs are wonderful but this was a gentle reminder to me that God is in the business of Changing Lives. To many Christmas is the best Holiday but to me and knowing Christ…Easter is really the best Holiday for me. How about you?

Blessings to you and your family on this Good Friday...He is Risen.

Candace Gregory
President/CEO

01 April 2010

Open Door Mission is about Changing Lives

Renee came to the Mission about six months ago. She was addicted, pregnant with her second child and homeless. She so desired to stay clean from drugs for her unborn child’s sake but was not able to on her own power. Desperate for help and a home, she came to Open Door Mission and enrolled in our New Life Recovery Program.

Her last program requirement was the WorkNet class – career planning, resume/application preparation and job search. I had the privilege of being Renee’s WorkNet advisor and she was willing to apply everything she learned to become employed and support her family.

This picture is Renee walking out the door her first day to work. She is a vibrant example of just one of the changed lives at Open Door Mission.

Joy Stevens
WorkNet Director