Author: Melinda

Faith

“… the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:3-4 (NIV)
 

Since obtaining our home for Elevate Hope House, the road has been a little rougher than I originally anticipated. Our Board of Directors knew we were stepping into the unknown, and that as believers we were called to trust, but if I am completely honest, trusting is not always easy – especially if you are an independent “do’er” like myself. There have been times where I have become anxious in regards to the direction things have headed as we prepare to house these families. Admittedly, I still have my moments as we work to open doors of uncertainty, but what I have learned is that while God may not always remove the obstacles in my path, He is always with me, and He knows that I will be okay – that Elevate Hope House is His to open in His time, and in His way.

This weekend, we were blessed by the women of Oak Haven Church and experienced a House Warming Shower for our home. Many women brought items and letters of encouragement for the near future. My home church, Oak Hill Baptist, even in their own time of change and uncertainty, wrapped their arms around this event as well and sent gifts of support, and words of love. Our Board of Directors ended the weekend by going through these gifts, and reading these words, as a reminder of God’s plan and how close we are to opening our home to the children He has called for us to love. As we ended our meeting, we read together the words of our mission, our vision, and our core values. To be honest, it had been some time since I had done so – and I felt a warmth in the home as these words were read – an affirmation of what we are doing, and that God is in control, so I need to lose control and give it to Him once again.

“Those that lead, support, volunteer, and work with Elevate Hope House value God the Father, Faithfulness, a Servant Heart, Righteousness, Love, and Hope above all things.” Above all, “Elevate Hope House puts God first in everything that we do. This means continuously seeking His righteousness and totally relying on Him. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matthew 6:33).” “Faithfulness” is also part of our core as we value faithful followers of God who stand before vacant fields, push fear aside, and put their hands to the plow and get a little messy, by placing their trust in Jesus Christ. ‘She considers a field and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.’ (Proverbs 31:16).”

With all of this said, you may be wondering – where are we at? We are close! I am learning about a whole new industry that I knew nothing about – the world of construction. We have wonderful volunteers from Knights of Columbus and other church organizations that are working to help us open doors, as they also take care of their families and other obligations. We are now in the final stages of completing construction, and we ask for your prayer to not only understand God’s timing, but also to be “graciously urgent” with the cold coming fast this Fall. Once construction is complete, we have teams in place to finalize the look of the home, and we prayerfully plan to have our soft open at the end of October, with these young moms and their children able to move in before it gets much colder. If you are interested in finding out exactly where we are at in this process, and if you might have a skill to share to ensure we are open before the unpredictable snow flies – feel free to reach out to me directly. 

Thank you for your continued support – I look forward to partnering with many of you very soon as we begin this next, exciting stage in the journey God has brought us on.

God calls us to put on kindness…

“…as God’s chosen ones… PUT ON compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience,  bearing with one another… forgiving one another… Above all, PUT ON love…” – Colossians 3:12‭-‬14 CSB –

This week has been a busy week. As I prepare to go back to work as well as press the pavement to open Elevate this Fall, I find myself working hard at creating a routine at home that helps me to feel “successful” in faith, as a mom, a wife, and more. Maybe successful isn’t the right word, but when you are busy, with potentially too much on your plate, things that should be a priority like my morning time with God, or actually having breakfast with my kids instead of relying on their independence, fall off. This week I was blessed to do a anniversary date my husband and Grandma. We dressed up and put on pearls, gloves, jewelry and more! Also this week, my daughter decided she wanted a make up party, and asked to put on everything from blush to eye shadow to nail polish for both her and Olivia (yes, regret soon followed). And even yesterday, we encouraged Ethan on his first 5K where he put on his uniform, and then soon put on mud during a most challenging run in the elements! The concept of “putting on” fancy clothes, make up, and uniforms is something that we might not give much thought to some days, but other days I find we give great thought to it. From picking the right headband that reflects peacock feathers from my wedding, to choosing the exact color nail polish, to dressing in the right gear for a race in the elements – many are very conscience of what they “put on.” In Colossians, we are reminded of what God calls us to “put on.” In fact, I find myself truly meditating on these two words today as I feel we as believers can talk about how we are called to treat others, but do we ever stop to think about the fact that we are called to intentionally put on kindness, just as if we were getting dressed for a night out? Or to put on patience, as if applying nail polish with each careful stroke? Sometimes we all are found guilty of rushing through our busy days, attempting to pack so much in that we feel is important to accomplish. If we take a moment to truly “put on” the attributes God calls us to put on each day, just imagine how much more successful in His grace we will feel when our head hits the pillow – regardless if each box was checked on the list or not.

To serve…

Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. – John 12:3‭ (NIV) –

Liz Curtis Higgs is another Bible Teacher I have come to love. When I was young, my mom’s Bible study group read “Bad Girls of the Bible,” and I couldn’t understand why such a “Baptist” group of conservative women would read a book about bad girls! Once older, I came to appreciate not just the book, but the way Liz teaches. She is real. She is vulnerable. Her words touch hearts and challenge minds in ways that only a few are able to do. Today, I am reminded of her words in regards to Mary as we continue to prepare our house for these young moms and their kids.

“Everything we have comes from God — our possessions, our bodies, our talents, our spiritual gifts, our everything. So, He will provide what He intends us to sacrifice, and He will give us the strength and courage to let go. That’s how amazing our God is. He is “… able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8, NIV)… What does Jesus expect from us? Only what He’s already given us.”

These words are written in regards to the scandalous moment of the Bible where Mary pours her most prized possession of perfume over Jesus’ feet and then uses her long, beautiful hair to wipe them dry. A moment of true sacrifice for Mary – but with no second thoughts. Mary knows who she sits before, and Mary desires to serve the Lord that came to save not only her, but the world.

We continue to talk about raising our Marketing Partners this week. We ask for those that believe Marketing and reaching the community through KTIS is a good next step to support us on a monthly basis. We will be giving our response to KTIS Friday, and thank you for your prayers and consideration around being a part of this team. We know that God calls us to serve others.. to humble ourselves before “the least of these” and to give each child of God what he has given us to serve.

Join us through marketing support elevatehopehouse.org/donate and join us THIS Saturday for our 2nd Annual Bean Bag Tournament! Elevatehopehouse.org/tournament-2019

#Gospetality

“Serve one another in love.” Galatians 5:13
I truly love Beth Moore. Lysa TerKeurst, Beth Moore, and Priscilla Shirer are probably the 3 most influential National, Bible Teachers in my life today. I say “National,” as I have grown up personally knowing through the church some very influential Bible Teachers as well – most of which I would now consider family. This morning, Olivia and I listened to Beth Moore preach on Abraham and the concept of serving others. She created a word – Gospetality – which is now forever going to be a part of my repertoire. “Gospetality” is hospitality with a Gospel mentality. She states, “We are losing a whole lot of the power of the gospel with our lost friends and neighbors because we no longer practice hospitality.” God calls us to love the lost through our actions – by “serving” them the gospel until we are able to “speak” to them the gospel. We may be ready to spout scripture on the flip of a dime, but is the one we are serving ready to hear it? Or is it simply a time to serve them in love? This is the vision of Elevate. To serve young moms and their kids the gospel, pray for them, and pray for the opportunity to speak the gospel when God has prepared their hearts to receive it. Join us this weekend! elevatehopehouse.org/events

PERSEVERANCE

“I waited patiently for the Lord; And He inclined to me, And heard my cry. He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, Out of the miry clay, And set my feet upon a rock, And established my steps.” Psalm 40:1-2

This is Ethan’s 1st year as a part of a Cross-Country Team. His God-sent 6th grade teacher suggested a few sports for him to try, and as a family we thought this might be worth a shot. It has been worth much more than that! From being blessed with a Christan coach/Christian focused team that supports one another, to seeing Ethan push himself individually in order to add to the success of his team as a whole – this sport had been a blessing to us. Perseverance. For Ethan, this word sounds strong with every race and every minute on his path. For Elevate, this word rings true as well as we continue through the remaining steps to open doors this Fall. Much like Ethan’s team, our Board of Directors realizes strongly that we each bring a different gift from God and when we do our part through Him, He will successfully allow us to launch this new page in Anoka County for the Kingdom. What a blessing. Don’t forget our 2nd Annual Bean Bag Tournament THIS SATURDAY! Sign up today! elevatehopehouse.org/events

He makes all things new…

“I will make all things new …” – Revelation 21:5 – Today is a bittersweet day. Today I leave shortly to worship with my childhood church family for one of the last times. So many memories in a church I have been in since birth that are shortly coming to an end – at least in the physical building. A building I grew up in. A building I was married in. Dedicated in. Baptized in. My kids were dedicated in… But today I choose to remember that He makes all things new, and that my church family will continue to do their incredible ministry in a community that needs His love, but simply in a new way that He is still planning! And this weekend Elevate was blessed with many items from the children’s ministry to create a calming, fun environment for our young moms and their kids to utilize in their safe place. Consider giving today! Elevatehopehouse.org/donate OR registering for our 2nd Annual Bean Bag Tournament NEXT SATURDAY elevatehopehouse.org/events

Start children off on the way they should go…

“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” (Proverbs 22:6, NIV)

As families start preparing for the new school year, including my own, I am reminded of this important verse in Proverbs. Not only does this verse remind me as a mom that God has given me the important responsibility of raising my kids on His name to know Him full well, but it also continues to challenge me in regards to Elevate and our ministry to work with those that do not know Him, or long to know Him more. Meg Bucher once wrote as a prayer for mothers, “We praise You for blessing us with motherhood, and the intentional way it matures our faith in You… There is no love that is an accident or outside Your will, because You are love. Each child, each person was created on purpose with purpose. Praise You that we get to take part in the greatest love story of all time.” What a great reminder – He is love. As our kids get ready for school, let us bless them with His love. As we work to open Elevate in October, let’s continue to do with His love in our hearts knowing full well this is His calling for our team and those that believe in it. Let us prepare our hearts to share with each mom and family we work with that “each child was created on purpose WITH PURPOSE… to mature our faith in Him.”

Join us once again for our 2nd Annual Bean Bag Tournament and Silent Auction on September 14th! Come rain or shine, this will be another great event this Fall!

Thank you!

“The Lord on high is mightier
Than the noise of many waters,
Than the mighty waves of the sea.
Your testimonies are very sure;
Holiness adorns Your house,
O Lord, forever.”
-Psalm 93: 4-5-

Thank you to everyone that came out to support our day of prayer! Each visit was a blessing throughout the day! Around 30 people took time out of their busy Summer Sunday to bless us with their support, love, and prayer – we are thankful!! I even had a surprise visit from family – blessed! Mark your calendar today for September 14th! Our 2nd Annual Bean Bag Tournament & Silent Auction, as we are less than 2 months away fr opening doors on Elevate and serving our community!
Elevatehopehouse.org

You will show me the path of life…

“You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” TOMORROW is our Day of Prayer! We look forward to seeing you then! Thank you to our now FOUR platinum donors – continued prayer for what God reveals tomorrow on our path! Elevategopehouse.org/dayofprayer

Blessed…

Deuteronomy 28:6! Blessed this morning to join the Oak Haven Youth Group and volunteers from Knights of Columbus to paint our home! Cannot wait to see the fun ministry that takes place, relationships that are built, and energy created as we prepare for both our Day of Prayer THIS Sunday, August 11th, and to open doors October for young moms and their kids experiencing homelessness! SIGN UP TODAY!! Elevatehopehouse.org/dayofprayer