The person who oversees this place was wondering if we could be of assistance. She shared that she would like to have everyone who arrives receive a welcome basket...especially since many arrive without anything. We agreed we would explore options around this lovely idea.
At this time in Love INC we were also right in the midst of staff transitions. And then Christmas was coming. Busy. Yes.
This idea continued to 'simmer,' however. Over the years we have often found that by giving people "Mercy Gifts" it opens the door to more relationship. When developing relationship, trust happens. When trust happens...we get to hear more of the 'deeper story' of their lives. That is often an opening for speaking Truth and Hope into their situations.
So...giving mercy gifts to these people wanting to be free of addictions seemed like a good way to present HOPE. Who might be interested in putting together 12-15 welcome baskets?
As it happens...a very generous Church in Philomath agreed this was a wonder-filled thing to be a part of! They went to work on this.
Today...about 5 months after the original request and one month after asking this Church....they came by the office to pick up some small fabric bags we had also filled with hygiene 'goodies' to add to the baskets they had filled.
This amazingly generous church is blessing this Partner Agency with 20 filled baskets for adults, and then they added about 8 more for any children that might be with a parent!!! They are now on their way to surprise and delight this agency!
Not only did approximately 25 volunteers get to participate, they are now loving and praying for individuals coming to this agency. They are now more aware of this 'population' and can pray for freedom from addictions for families these baskets will touch.
PLUS, this models well Love INC's mission to impact our community for Christ. 'Strangers' to these families have given generously to bless and welcome them to our community! Please join us in praying that these Mercy Gifts will become a point of change for those who are likely struggling...pray they will feel HOPE that things can change. Pray they will catch a vision that they ARE valuable and precious and worthy of love.