“Lord, I don’t know what I’m doing. I want to change!”
Twenty years ago, I walked out of the county jail with little more than a plastic bag, some hair grease, a comb, shower flip flops, shorts, and a T-shirt. I walked straight to Union Rescue Mission. All I knew was that I wanted to change, and when I was ready, the doors of URM were open for me. When I needed this place most, they received me.
I was a drug addict for much of my life. It cost me jobs, cars, relationships, apartments, and by the age of 27, I was living on the streets. By that time, I HAD to get high just so I didn’t have to face how bad my life was. Then I ended up going to jail three times in less than a year. After the last time, I came to URM.
"When I used to look in a mirror, I didn’t like who I saw. Today, sometimes I just stare at the man looking back, and I think, 'Wow, God.'" —Alex
I cried out, “Lord, I don’t know what I’m doing. I want to change. I want to get right with you. But I don’t know how.” Then God answered beyond anything I could imagine. That was the beginning of my spiritual awakening and that awakening was the beginning of my recovery.
Over the next year, I knew I could not do this alone. I needed a community, so God surrounded me with Christian mentors, counselors, and friends who walked with me every step of the way to my new life.
Today, 20 years later, I have the privilege of helping transform the lives of other women and men just like me. I work in the Department of Philanthropy at Union Rescue Mission, helping to build relationships with donors like you, serving alongside you as God uses us both to make this miraculous, life-transforming ministry possible.
As I see it, when I came to Union Rescue Mission, these doors were open for me. Now, it’s my job to help keep these holy doors open for the next me. In fact, I have a note on my desk that reads, “Keep the doors open for the next you,” and I signed it, “Jesus”. Because this is what He called me to do.
When I used to look in a mirror, I didn’t like who I saw. Today, sometimes I just stare at the man looking back, and I think, Wow, God. Because I see a miracle. I see resurrection. I see the man God intended me to be.
I hope this resonates with you. As a donor, you made sure these doors were open for me. As a donor, you transformed my life.
Thank you for keeping the door open for the next me. All Glory to God!
Help transform the lives of more neighbors devastated by homelessness!
A New Opportunity to Walk Alongside a Neighbor Devastated by Homelessness
“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another.”—1 JOHN 1:7a
There are many reasons why men and women tragically fall into homelessness. Childhood trauma, emotional wounds, abuse, mental illness, addictions, health issues, job loss, and more.
These struggling men and women need to understand the root causes of their homelessness and why their lives aren’t working. They need God’s power at work in their lives. Then they need someone to walk with them, side by side, every step of the way, as they rebuild their lives on a solid biblical foundation and lasting solutions.
That’s the kind of help we offer at Union Rescue Mission—but we can’t do it without the long-term commitment of friends like you. That’s why we want to invite you, today, to walk with one of our guests every step of the way, just as we do.
Union Rescue Mission’s new monthly donor program, Union Fellowship, gives truly compassionate friends like you the chance to help transform someone’s life each and every month.
Members of this exclusive Fellowship will receive regular updates on an individual’s progress as they journey in fellowship with them from despair and homelessness to hope and a transformed life. In addition, you will have the chance to participate in a live online prayer room, where you can pray for a new person coming to Union Rescue Mission, for someone who is struggling, or give thanks for someone who is graduating.
You will play a key role in helping individuals experience spiritual awakening and then walk alongside them by providing the critical support needed. For more information about Union Fellowship, please visit urm.org/unionfellowship.
What is Union Fellowship?
A group of friends who give monthly to walk alongside neighbors in need and help them experience spiritual awakening and new life.
What Can I Expect?
–Regular updates on an individual’s progress
–Access to participate in public reading of Scripture, Chapel Tuesday, and graduation events
–Monthly prayer with a chaplain and special devotionals
–The joy of being part of spiritual transformation
Join Union Fellowship—Give Monthly
To make an impact in an individual’s life all year long, join Union Fellowship. You’ll receive regular reports on an individual’s progress and have special opportunities to pray. Your monthly gift will help someone on the road to recovery and will support them, step by step, as they walk toward a transformed life.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of volunteers who give their time and talent at Union Rescue Mission and Hope Gardens has fallen. As we begin 2021, the men, women, and children we serve need you!
URM does everything possible to ensure that volunteering is safe by providing needed social distancing, hand-washing stations, masks, and other precautions. Volunteering is a great way to start the new year off right!
Learn how the URM Thrift Store is providing job opportunities and how the proceeds are making an impact in people’s lives at urm.org/stories.
Give Someone the Gift of New Life in 2021
You can help someone in need experience a miracle!
It takes extraordinary bravery for a man or woman to make the decision to change their life—and they need selfless, courageous, and generous people like you to partner with them.
Please, at the start of 2021, share a special gift to help someone experience a spiritual awakening and take practical steps toward a new life. This is God’s work at Union Rescue Mission and you can be part of it through your gift today!
Someone needs a miracle that God can use YOU to give.
Yes, Living on LA’s Streets in Winter IS Dangerous
Your compassion today will save the life of a man, woman, or child in need.
Living on the streets of Los Angeles is dangerous any time of year, but winters can be particularly devastating—especially when it rains.
Hypothermia can set in at temperatures as high as 50 degrees and commonly occurs when a person stays out in the cold for too long, doesn’t have appropriate clothing, or isn’t able to change out of wet clothes and move to a warm, dry location. Last year, more people devastated by homelessness died of hypothermia in Los Angeles than in New York City and San Francisco combined.
Please pray for our neighbors devastated by homelessness this winter.
NOTES FROM ANDY
Partners in God’s Life-Transforming Work
I am so humbled to be part of Union Rescue Mission and fulfilling our call to feed those who are hungry, to shelter those who have none, to heal those who are suffering with addiction, and to love those who have been forgotten.
Mostly, however, I’m grateful that God has invited us to partner with Him in transforming lives through the power of Jesus Christ. Only God can truly transform someone’s life. Only in Christ will anyone ever experience everlasting life and healing.
God, however, has called you too. As one of Union Rescue Mission’s faithful, compassionate donors, you make this work possible, helping to create an environment where men, women, and children can experience new life in Him.
Now, however, I want to invite you to take the next step. When you join our new Union Fellowship, you’ll partner with one of our guests, walking side by side with them, month by month, from beginning to end, from their spiritual awakening to their spiritual transformation. I pray you join this new Fellowship today.
As we start this new year, 2021, let’s remember that Christ is still on His throne. Thank you for your partnership as together we serve Him.