"One of these losses became personal...
We were forced to ask ourselves what resources do families need?"
Wesley Freedom United Methodist Church is in the center of the 21784-zip code of Carroll County, Maryland. We are rich in history, dedicated in providing outreach programs to those in our community and motivated to expanding resources for abundant health.
Many families in our area have faced the loss of a loved one due to addiction, mental health symptoms, and grief. One of these losses became personal, when we, as a church community, faced the loss of a member who was a son and a brother. We were forced to ask ourselves what resources do families need? Where do families go who need to find reliable treatment, and where does the entire family receive support and healing?
We created a family resources center; a place where families could call if they were in a crisis. Over the course of four years, we partnered with local agencies collecting information and building relationships working together to make resources available in South Carroll. Our mission became, “To be a safe place that connects people to relationships and resources for abundant life”, our vision, “To be a community that treats all people with dignity and respect”. We wanted to pray big, dream big and believe big. We wanted to focus and expand; focus on addiction and expand our physical space and resources. So, we rebranded our ministry and renamed it Hope Rising Resource Center; where our focus will be support for individuals and families as they continue recovery toward abundant life.
We chose winter wheat because it is planted in the fall where the seeds stay in the dark, cold, and hard earth. We can find ourselves in that same kind of darkness; hard, cold, feelings of abandonment and finding no relief. Somehow in that darkness God is still at work in that seed; it is still germinating, and things are happening even when we can’t see it.
It’s the same for you and for anyone who finds themselves in the darkness:
God is still working through His grace…
God is still working through those who are willing to get down into the darkness with us….
God is still cultivating the earth with kindness…
God is still watering with love and shining the light of Jesus on those who just need to know that God loves them…
So… why wheat? Because in our darkest pain, addiction, sadness, and need, God is still growing us, working in us, and loving us fiercely!
Hope is rising!