The Gift of a New Life: Receivers Become Givers
At night, Melissa often found herself huddled in dark street corners or in one of many Portland tent cities. Addicted to heroin, the opportunities to turn her life around were dwindling, and she was running out of time. Something major was happening, and if she didn’t find help, it wouldn’t just be her life on the line. Melissa was pregnant.
“It was a lot of fear,” she told me. “And guilt and shame and broken. I was so broken.”
Melissa’s life went from bad to worse when she landed on the cold, hard floor of a prison cell. With all options stripped away, she made a decision that this was the moment to turn everything around, not only for herself but for the life of her unborn baby. She successfully completed an addiction recovery program, which allowed her to transition from prison to a small studio room at Open House Ministries, a family shelter in Vancouver. It was the first chapter in her new life, a victory to celebrate, but something still didn’t feel right—until she met with a chaplain at Open House Ministries. He heard her concerns and fears, and she credits that conversation to the moment when everything clicked for her. “What was missing was Jesus, that’s always what was missing, this whole time,” she said. “That’s why I couldn’t get clean and stay clean.” Shortly after embracing her newfound faith, she saw love materialize before her eyes through Open House Ministries’ Christmas Adoption program.
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