A CHRISTIAN MISSION
November 2017 Newsletter
A Word From Our Director ~ Pastor Andrew Pistone
DOOR OF HOPE MISSION UPDATE:
I am saddened that I have to come to you with news that is not what I had envisioned for the Mission.
This past month, the Board of Directors and I came to the decision that - in order to help the shortfall in our budget, we would have to say goodbye to Patti and Michael Sanders.
Patti was our Thrift Store Manager and Michael was my right-hand man at the Mission, serving as Assistant Executive Director.
Needless to say, this was not an easy decision, but one that had to be made.
Patti and Michael have moved back to their hometown in North Carolina, and are doing well. We pray for God's guidance and blessing for them as they begin this new chapter in their lives.
It's very difficult for me to share the financial difficulties which we are going through; but on the other hand, I'm sure many of you would ask, “Why didn't you tell me that the Mission was going through a rough time?”
We started the Thrift Store to help the Mission meet its obligations, and to get us on the path to establishing a safe place for women and children.
The Thrift Store is able to sustain itself now, but it's too soon for it to be able to help the Mission.
This year, we had big losses in monetary donations, and we had additional struggles which cost us thousands of dollars to fix.
We know that through compassionate care and ministering, people can be exposed to the power of the Gospel and experience changed lives.
Please give today to help the homeless in Odessa. Your donation provides safe shelter, meals and guidance toward lasting hope.
We are coming up to that critical time of year when the need is particularly great for those who are without family and shelter. Thank you in advance for your generosity. Your dollars will have eternal significance as we use them to care for those in desperate need.
If you would like to financially help support the ministry of Door of Hope Mission please send your donation to P.O. Box 1789, Odessa, TX 79760
You can also donate on-line at our website. www.DoorOfHopeMission.com
Thank you - truly,
As you read the following story, I would like to remind you of the words written by Paul in Philippians 4:4-7: “4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your graciousness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. 6 Don't worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Don't worry about anything but in everything through prayer and supplication with Thanksgiving, bring it to the Lord. Rejoice!!
Thankful For The Thorns
Sandra was feeling extremely sad as she entered the flower shop in the third week of November. Up to this point, her life had been easy. Then, in the fourth month of her pregnancy, a minor automobile accident had resulted in the death of her unborn child. During Thanksgiving week, she would have delivered a son, and she was grieving. As if that weren't enough, her husband's company was considering a transfer. Then, her sister, whose holiday visit she was anticipating, called - saying she could not come. What's worse, Sandra's friend had infuriated her by suggesting her grief was a God-given path to maturity that would allow her to empathize with others who suffer. “She has no idea what I'm feeling," Sandra shuddered. Thanksgiving? "Thankful for what?" she wondered…for a careless driver whose truck was hardly scratched when he rear-ended her?...for an airbag that saved her life, but took the life of her child?
"Good afternoon, can I help you?" asked Jenny (the clerk in the flower shop.) Sandra said, "I . . . I need an arrangement." "For Thanksgiving?” asked Jenny. Sandra nodded. "Do you want beautiful but ordinary, or would you like to order a customer favorite which I call the 'Thanksgiving Special'?" Jenny saw Sandra's curiosity and continued. "I'm convinced that flowers tell stories, and that each arrangement hints at a particular feeling. Are you looking for something that conveys gratitude this Thanksgiving?" "Not exactly!" Sandra blurted. "I'm sorry, but in the last five months, everything that could go wrong, has gone wrong.”
Sandra regretted her outburst, but was surprised when Jenny said, "I have the perfect arrangement for you." Suddenly, the door's small bell rang. "Hi Barbara!" Jenny said. She politely excused herself and walked toward a small workroom. She quickly reappeared, carrying a massive arrangement of green bows and long-stemmed thorny roses; but, the top ends of the rose stems were neatly snipped - no flowers. "Do you want this in a box?" Jenny asked. Sandra watched for Barbara's response. Was this a joke? Who would want rose stems and no flowers? She waited for laughter, but neither woman laughed. "Yes, please. It's exquisite." said Barbara. "You'd think after three years of getting the “Special”, I wouldn't be so moved by its significance, but it's happening again. My family will love this one. Thanks.”
Sandra stared. "Why so normal a conversation about so strange an arrangement?" she wondered. "That lady left with just stems!” "Yep. That's the Special. I call it the 'Thanksgiving Thorns Bouquet.'" "But, why do people pay for that?" "Do you really want to know?" "Yes, my curiosity wouldn't let me leave this shop without knowing.”
"Well," she continued, "Barbara came into the shop three years ago feeling very much like you feel today. She thought she had very little to be thankful for. She had lost her father to cancer, the family business was failing, her son was into drugs, and she faced major surgery. That same year, I lost my husband. I had complete responsibility for the shop and for the first time, spent the holidays alone. I had no children, no husband, no family nearby, and too great a debt to allow any travel, and I learned to be thankful for thorns." Sandra's eyebrows lifted. "Thorns?”
"I'm a Christian, Sandra. I've always thanked God for good things in life and I never thought to ask Him why good things happened to me. But, when bad stuff hit, did I ever ask! It took time to learn that dark times are important. I always enjoyed the flowers of life, but it took thorns to show me the beauty of God's comfort. The Bible says that God comforts us when we're afflicted, and from His consolation we learn to comfort others." Sandra gasped. "A friend read that passage to me and I was furious! I guess the truth is, I don't want comfort. I've lost a baby and I'm angry with God." Then, the door's bell rang again.
“Hey, Phil!" shouted Jenny, as a balding, rotund man entered the shop. She softly touched Sandra's arm and moved to welcome him. He tucked her under his side for a warm hug. "I'm here for twelve thorny, long-stemmed stems!" Phil laughed heartily. "I've got them ready," said Jenny. She lifted a tissue-wrapped arrangement from the refrigerated cabinet. "Beautiful," said Phil. "My wife will love them." Sandra could not resist asking, "These are for your wife?" Phil saw that Sandra's curiosity matched his when he first heard of a Thorn Bouquet. "Do you mind me asking, Why thorns?" "In fact, I'm glad you asked," he said. "Four years ago, my wife and I nearly divorced. After forty years, we were in a real mess, but we slogged through, problem by rotten problem, and we rescued our marriage. Last year, at Thanksgiving, I stopped in here for flowers. I must have mentioned surviving a tough process, because Jenny told me that she kept a vase of rose stems… stems!... as a reminder of what she learned from 'thorny' times. That was good enough for me and I took the stems home. My wife and I decided to label each one for a specific thorny situation and give thanks for what the problem taught us. I'm pretty sure this stem review is becoming a tradition." Phil paid Jenny, thanked her again and, as he left, said to Sandra, "I highly recommend the Special!”
"I don't know if I can be thankful for the thorns in my life," Sandra said. "Well, my experience says that thorns make roses more precious. We treasure God's providential care more during trouble than at any other time. Don't resent the thorns." Tears rolled down Sandra's cheeks. For the first time since the accident, she loosened her grip on resentment. "I'll take twelve long-stemmed thorns, please." "I hoped you would," Jenny said. "I'll have them ready in a minute. Every time you see them, remember to appreciate both the good and the hard times. We grow through both.” "Thank you. What do I owe you?" "Nothing, nothing but a pledge to work toward healing your heart. The first year's arrangement is always on me.”
Jenny handed a card to Sandra. "I'll attach a card like this to your arrangement. Go ahead, read it." Lord, I have thanked You a thousand times for my roses, but never once for my thorns. Teach me the value of my thorns. Show me that I can grow closer to You through the path of pain. Show me that my tears have made my rainbow.
Please pray about becoming a supporter of The Door Of Hope Mission. ALL donations are tax deductible.
We are in need of supporters who can help with a monthly donation. To make a donation, click the link below or mail a check to: P.O. Box 1789, Odessa, TX 79760
DOOR OF HOPE THRIFT STORE UPDATE
We are in need of good furniture and antiques that you might want to donate to our ministry, and of course - we continue to take ALL donations with grateful hearts. We can also accept cars, trucks, RVs and boats.
Please come and visit the Door of Hope Thrift Store. We are located at 1611 E. 8th Street, Odessa, TX 79761.
If you need us to come pickup your donation please give us a call at the Mission 432-337-8294 and we will send someone to pick it up.
Don't forget that ALL proceeds from the Thrift Store go directly to support the ministries of the Door Of Hope Mission.
Our hours for shopping are Monday - Saturday from 9:00 am – 7:00 pm
Please visit us on Facebook : www.Facebook.com/DoorOfHopeThriftStore
All donations are tax deductible.
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