Author: Melinda

So many birthdays this week!!

Happy Birthday this week to all 3 of these ladies! We are so blessed to have Caryn as our Director of Finance! God has gifted her in so many ways that she jumped into a need of our 501(c)3 and will most likely shift into a whole new area of our non-profit when another need arises! Our newest Director, Tami, blesses us with direct experience working with youth experiencing homelessness and has taken on finalizing our program and creating training for our Family Advocates that will come alongside our young moms. Finally, Kelsey has been with us since the beginning of the vision and we are so thankful for her dedication and heart. Happy Birthday ladies!!

Happy Birthday, Caryn!!

Happy Birthday to our lovely Director of Finance, Caryn! We are so grateful for her passion for our mission and her desire to be who God purposed her to be! Thank you, Caryn, for choosing to be such an irreplaceable part of team!
Don’t forget to support our mission through a commitment of monthly financial support @ elevatehopehouse.org/events – just $77/month will help us hire our FIRST Residential Housing Advocate for our FIRST home!

I have called you by name…

 “…I have called you by name; you are Mine!’” Isaiah 43:1 (NASB)
 
Thankful this morning for the reminder that I am His and that He is faithful. No matter the circumstances I may face, no matter how insurmountable my goals may seem – He is with me and He has called me to do His good work here on Earth. I must remember to live this life for my family and according to His purpose so that my children may grow in their faith deeply. I am thankful for my quiet moments with my littlest littles where I can reflect on His word and prioritize a consistent moment with them each Monday. As we continue to finalize Elevate’s FIRST home, we ask that you give faithfully and consistently just $77/month towards the salary of our FIRST Residential Housing Advocate. Learn more @ elevatehopehouse.org/events

$77/month…

“You take what the enemy meant for evil, and you turn it for good… I am going to see a victory… For the battle belongs to the Lord.”

Blessed by my “North” Church Family this weekend @ Northgate as I share my story, and learn the stories of others that God brought into my life today. Donate to our Residential Housing Advocate campaign during this giving season: elevatehopehouse.org/donate

Last night…

Last night we learned of a young mom who is pregnant with 3 littles under the age of 4. She is currently living in her car. Last night when I was hearing about this young mom, the temperature was 10 degrees – and it only got colder overnight. Unfortunately, our home is not quite ready, and we are still seeking funds to both open doors in the next month as well as to provide the opportunity to hire our first Residential Housing Advocate.
Please pray for this young mom and her littles as she learns more about our program. We pray that if we are the right fit to come alongside her that she will make the decision to do so, and that we will be ready to welcome her when she does.
Novemeber 14th is just TWO DAYS away! Please continue to pray for partners who will start giving just $77/month for our first paid position within Elevate Hope House – you can make your first contribution @ elevatehopehouse.org/donate

He is here in the middle…

“Can’t go back to the beginning
Can’t control what tomorrow will bring
But I know here in the middle
Is the place where you promise to be
I’m not enough unless you come
Will you meet me here again’
Cause all I want is all you are
Will you meet me here again”

This song resonates as I wake up this morning with little Olivia and decide to send an update out for prayer. We are so close, yet in some moments feel so far from begining to serve these young moms and their children. We have begun out discussions with Common Bond, Hope4Youth and other organizations as we determine the first families we will serve in our first home. We had an agressive timeline this month that has now been complicated by a complication discovered in the basement. It is seemingly easy for me to question myself and whether or not God is truly calling us to do this mission with how many complications and delays have occured, but then I choose to reflect over all He has done.This time last year I had no idea all of the wonderful people He would bring into my life. The congregation of Oak Haven has been such a supportive blessing and now my daughter attends Awana there, and my relationships have become deeper. We have created relationships with the Knights of Columbus who still tireless work through every complication to ensure our young moms have a place to live this winter, even with it getting colder each day. The Ham Lake Chamber of Commerce just blessed us with a gift of $5000, and the Lions of Ham Lake gifted us $5000 this Summer. We have met with lovely Lionesses as well this past month who desire to adopt our families for Christmas. KTIS desires to support when the time is right, and it is such a reaffirming blessing to know that many still support, even in my moments of feeling unable to control tomorrow as the lyric says.

So where are we at? Very close. We will need to aggressively and quickly fix what was found in the basement, and then we will continue with all of our partners that are lined up ready to finish the home. Our new furnace and a/c was installed this week! So we have heat! With that now ready to go, our flooring will be installed in the kitchen and dining rooms this week, while painting is finished up! Our bathrooms are almost set, and once that happens our generous team from Prestige Drywall will be able to come in and wrap up our new walls. Once they are done, Redmans will come in and complete the bedroom carpets. We are almost there!

So what do we still need?
1) Prayer that the right individuals will help us aggressively finish the basement.
2) Prayer that the right families will be introduced to our organization and join us this Fall
3) DONATION: Full size bed headboard and footboard frames. Do you have something lovely you no longer need? Possibly a night stand to match? We are looking for up to 4. Please reach out today!
4) Prayer as I meet with a few more Lions groups this month/December to ask for support.

The last thing I will share with you in asking for prayer is that I have been offered a new promotional opportunity in regards to employment that I have decided to pursue. In just a week I will begin with the faith-based company New Creations as an Executive Director of Licensing and Community Relations. This change comes with mixed emotions, but I am prayerful that it is God’s plan and will allow for more opportunities to continue the profress of Elevate.

Thank you for your prayers and support always.

November 14th this year is Give to the Max Day! We would appreciate your financial support on this day once again. The link to our page can be at elevatehopehouse.org/donate

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