Category: Visalia Rescue Mission

You Want To Risk

On my walk to work this morning, air crisp and clear after an overnight rainstorm, I walk past a man sitting on the street corner. I immediately recognize him as a former resident in our Life Change Academy, who left early on in the program.

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Where They Need to Be

My wife woke me before the sun was up on Dec. 20, 2010. Her water broke and our twins were born later that morning. A few days later on Christmas Eve, I was on Mooney Boulevard buying the last little (halfdead) tree left on the lot. I came home to a dark house and decorated the tree so that my family would have the most cheerful Christmas morning possible.

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The Oath for Compassionate Service, Pt. 3

I’ve always been an avid reader, but for the past eight years my bookshelves have been filled with picture books I read with my children. Fortunately, I recently stumbled upon two picture books for grownups, which tackle the complicated issues of pain and trauma. Turns out the one question the brain is constantly asking itself is, “Am I safe?”

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Those People are Too Far Gone

My wife and I just celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary and found ourselves reminiscing about the marriage process of becoming a partner in life and not a sole proprietor (so to speak). I recalled how a friend would invite me to a movie or a day trip to the beach, to which I would immediately accept. “Don’t you need to talk to your wife?” they would respond.

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Go Home

My friend Dan often talks about his father’s 1955 Ford Thunderbird—a beautiful, turquoise convertible. He showed me a black and white photo of him as a kid smiling in front of it. He looks happy. For years, Dan didn’t know his grandfather was an alcoholic. The story goes, his grandfather would pass out in the snow in front of their Michigan home and Dan’s father would be the one to get him into the house. If only all of our memories were like the Thunderbird and less like the burden of an inebriated parent.

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The Company We Keep

It’s been anonymously said that an individual can be summed up just by looking at the company they keep. This is a double-edged sword to be sure. For many of our Life Change Academy residents, their friendship circles included drug dealers and other drug addicts — a truth stained with the old adage: “Misery loves company.” Relationships with better friends and concerned family members easily get pushed away. Ironically, Jesus’ reputation suffered in relation to the disreputable company he kept — as seen in Matthew 9 when His disciples were asked, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?” The religious community just didn’t understand why he would surround himself so.

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