Stories of Impact

Abundant Life

A woman we have worked with shares her story:

I came from a huge loving Italian family always laughing hugging, loud and full of love and
support with a strong bond. I met a man who,  at the time,  I felt like he was the best thing ever!
We fell in love, had a child,  and portrayed a great family life with everything going well..   After a
while it became apparent to my family, they could see through the cracks,  that things weren't so
good.. I ended up being in an abusive relationship for far too long.  Nine years later my hope
was dead. I prayed and asked the Lord to give me a sign if I should stay or go.  That night, my
significant other became physical with me once again.  I took that as my sign. When he thought
I was going back to the bedroom I went to the front room and told my son to cooperate- we were
leaving.  I left in a robe and neither of us had shoes on-  I just drove away. I ended up at a
family member’s house.   They drove me to Michigan where operation 6:12 for women was, to
help me get on a new path.  It was very hard for me and my son both to adjust in the beginning.
That’s where God picked me up and hasn’t left me since. That was the start of my new life.  I
later transferred to the 6:12 location in Sugarcreek OH. I was graduating from the program and I
needed a plan for my next steps. I was freaking out not knowing where to go next.  My friend
Janelle at work suggested I call Love INC  and inquire about their Homes of Hope program and
any other resources they may have available. In further discussion with the director Vicki.   I
mentioned that I didn’t have any furniture, bedding, kitchen items or even cleaning supplies
Vicki said that the Churches of Holmes county would help.  Through tears I asked…”This is
what the church does?  I didn’t know that! You are all truly sent from heaven!”

In December of 2020 just before Christmas my son and I moved into a Homes of Hope home.
A volunteer even provided a Christmas tree! While I was in the Homes of Hope program I was
required to create a spending plan and to meet weekly with a budget coach for accountability
and goal setting, as well as Fresh start Classes at Martins Creek on Monday evenings I attended
Faith and Finances, Faith and Fitness, and also Life Without Lack while my  son was able to
play in the gym with the other children and childcare providers.  Birthdays can be a huge
expense when you are looking to stay on budget, but the Gift Ministry helped us celebrate my
son’s birthday with gifts, decorations, and even a cake while staying on track!  I was able to get
some financial guidance on things in my past from CSB and help with taxes through a Love
INC volunteer as well.  Before long, I was ready to move into my own place!  I grew spiritually, in
knowledge, love, and wisdom through this time and am now able to share Jesus with others!
Ashes to beauty.

I live by Romans 6:12-14. Do not let sin control the way you live, do not give into sinful desires.
Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give
yourselves completely to God for you were dead, but now you have a new life. So, use your
whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God. Sin is no longer your
master, for you no longer live under the requirements of the law, instead you live under the
freedom of God’s grace.

Now that’s living life abundantly!