We have been so blessed at Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries just as, I’m sure, other charitable groups are blessed. We ourselves have thousands of active donors contributing to the work we do to feed, clothe, shelter, and provide treatment and services to men, women and children throughout the Detroit area. Those donors are digging deeper into their pockets to give more to us each year so we can continue that work and expand our services beyond what grant funds would typically allow us to address. For example, donors allow us to keep our Warming Center doors open even longer during the cold winter days, to provide pastoral support to residents in need of spiritual counseling, to match federal grants that allow us to secure all the dollars needed to provide transitional and permanent housing to homeless individuals, and to repair buildings that serve people with substance addictions or who are homeless.
We have thousands of volunteers who have given their spare time to help carry out projects ranging from collecting and wrapping gifts for homeless children and adults, to repairing homes to be given to working poor families with children to serving meals, growing vegetables, and cleaning our facilities and beautifying our neighborhoods. We have Transformation Ambassadors who are reaching out to new parts of the community to educate their friends, neighbors, and co-workers about the ministry of DRMM and to engage individuals and groups in our work. They include people like Bankole Thompson, who has lent his name and reputation to raise funds for homeless teens and Veterans, and Kurt A. David, who is using his “From Glory Days” Sunday show on WADL Detroit to let people know about lives being changed at the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries.
Organizations like Comcast and Ford and hundreds of other groups have supplied volunteers and financial support to undertake everything from garden and yard beautification projects to kitchen installation and underwriting programs. We have seen wonderful things happen because of that kind of help from our donors, volunteers, and community companies.
Have you ever heard good news and felt like your heart would burst if you didn’t find someone – in fact, many people – to share it with? That is a truly wonderful experience. Telling and re-telling such a story seems to get sweeter and sweeter until it is time to rest and store the memory away for another day.
I remember a time I heard good news that I had waited a long time for. You can imagine how I felt when there was no one available to tell. That was one of the most frustrating, incomplete feelings of my life. Until I knew my friends were awake and I could call to share the news, I felt undone, unfinished and dissatisfied. It was like hitting a tennis ball and waiting for someone to lob it back at me. It was like asking a question and not receiving an answer back. It was like being an atheist with no One to thank.
C.S. Lewis wrote in a letter to his brother that “‘thanking the Giver’ … is the completion of a pleasure.” I believe we were born with a built-in drive to thank God for all the good things we receive. We were also born with a drive to shout out our thanks about the people who God moves to give us good things. At the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries, when our donors and volunteers give to help the people who come to us for help, it touches my heart and reminds me how powerfully God loves and cares for those He sends to us. The burden of my heart today is to say, “Thank you for giving and caring and showing me God’s hand”.