Why It Matters
We use the phrase "Your Light Matters" as the theme for our annual Gala Fundraiser. This is not a mere slogan, but the declaration of a truth that underlies the work we do to help the homeless, and change lives. We honestly could not fulfill this mission without the individual contributions of those who identify with, and support, this noble cause. The brief testimonies below are some of the many examples of why your light matters.
Before he came to the Mission, alcohol was Vince's only escape from his abusive upbringing. He was, in a word, broken, and ill-equipped to repair the dysfunction, damaged relationships, and burnt bridges left in the wake of his addiction. But he says, “By putting my faith in God, and surrendering to His will, I have realized great changes in me as a person.”
Vince is extremely grateful for LBRM staff, who, as an encouragement in his relationship with God, have guided him in learning (among other things) responsibility, empathy, perseverance, and relational reconciliation. He eagerly anticipates his return to the workforce.
By the time April arrived at LBRM in late 2016, she had lost everything—home, family, job and money—and was addicted to methamphetamines and alcohol. But April got clean for the first time in 22 years, and has since learned much about surrender to God, accountability, commitment, and loving and serving others.
With her children restored to her, April looks forward to gainful employment and establishing a home again. She has nothing but praise for LBRM staff for pointing her to God and equipping her with tools for success. She says, “I love, love, love the Long Beach Rescue Mission. They saved my life!”
Jason once hoped he could somehow compensate for the poor choices which resulted in his need for the Mission's New Life Program, choices he now very much regrets. But an understanding of God's love and forgiveness for him has not only relieved him of that weight, but instilled in him a desire to help others come to that same understanding.
Jason is now on staff at LBRM and extending God’s love to other men in need. He knows, through personal experience, that God will open doors which before seemed forever locked. He says, “All things are possible through Christ who loved us.”
Now that Mayra has graduated LBRM's New Life Program, she looks forward to applying the relational skills she has developed in the hope of building something which was absent in her upbringing—a strong family foundation. Her relationships with her children and grandchildren have been restored, but Mayra looks forward to much more.
When Mayra came to the Mission, she lacked confidence, spiritual guidance and the involvement of God in her life, all of which things she now enjoys. She has learned, in her personal growth, and in her relationships, that with God she can accomplish anything.