The month of May, Our Lady’s Month has been busy at Joseph’s House. It began with the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker on May 1st and ended on Friday with the Feast of the Visitation on May 31st. Mother’s Day, a variety of Marian Feast Days and spring arrive in May and give all a new lease on life filling the day by day activities of our home with excitement and anticipation. We have been busy with Baby Bottle Drives, grant proposals and field trips. Our home is much like yours and because we have a large family there are many astonishing moments where we all witness the hopes and dreams of our moms come together making the anticipation and excitement even greater.
This happened many times over the last few weeks. An Exodus mom who has tried to work on attaining her GED for more than 15 years finally did it. Not only did she do it, she did it the very first time she took the test and passed everything. Another one of our moms who has been working on her GED and is ready to test this summer, began her first part time job last week. This is a major stepping stone in this young women’s life she knows would have never occurred if she had stayed in an abusive relationship. The joy in her face and her new found confidence and independence come from knowing for the first time in her young life, she is appreciated and valued by others, and she has many God-given talents she never knew existed.
All the achievements occurring in our home are a result of of our loving, supportive and most dedicated staff. Our CM Rebecca, our HM Karen and our Exodus leader Sue, work around the clock to direct our moms and their children. There are late night and weekend phone calls that pop up routinely because the job descriptions of these staff members begin with, ‘you are a mom to the residents and a grandmother to their children’. We all know moms are on call constantly and it is most certainly the same at Joseph’s House. Our moms succeed and grow because our staff members are incredible moms who model success and show them how to grow with God as their center. We are forever grateful to all our staff who serve and model with the love and mercy of Jesus.
Our moms all had a “Come to Jesus” moment this week as Karen our HM took the whole crew to the amphitheater for the Franklin Graham event. Other staff and volunteers stayed at the house with the little ones so the moms could take in this once in a life time event. They were awed by the message and jubilant with the Holy Spirit and want more Jesus in their lives. To this end Karen has been leading them in the Alpha program and will be teaching more spirit filled programs in the future. This is one way to instill purpose and create plans for their young lives attuned to the will of God. For many this event on Thursday evening feels like it was a new beginning and opportunity for them, and for us, as we work to direct them towards the ways of Jesus Christ.
Leading our children to Christ is the most imperative and most difficult task we will likely encounter. Like all of us, our moms are resistant to the call of God in their hearts and souls. They are easily sidetracked and led by the direction of a secular culture. They are inundated everywhere they go and in everything they see and hear on social media to the falsehoods society teaches. How do we change this? How do we fight against this? How do we instill within them and within our own children the truth that life is better with God?
Unfortunately, the way to truth many times is filled with pain, potholes and hardship. Many times, we need to hit rock bottom to find the path to true freedom in Christ. Many of our moms are already there when they come to us. Others are still tumbling downhill and watching them delve into darkness before hitting ground zero is agonizing. However, God is always there to lift them up if they only know to call on Him, and Joseph’s House is there to give them a chance to learn and remember this remedy for all despair. Is it easy? No. Is it exhausting? Most definitely. Is it worth all the angst, tears and heartache we encounter in trying to teach them? Unequivocally, yes.
We have come to realize and work to make all understand, Jesus knocks at the door of their hearts and ours in sometimes almost silent, imperceptible ways. When we finally notice Him and let Him into the emptiness residing in the center of our being, He fills us with a radiant warmth that burns in us and shines through us so we may share Him with others. He is the answer to the never-ending itch we can’t reach and the desolation experienced in the wee hours when we are lost and alone. He is the end of the race we are all trying to finish and the sun rising and setting on the horizon bringing us peace. When we are finally ready to accept the legitimacy of His truth, the treasures and certitudes of life unfold before us.
So, we ask you to pray for us. To pray for our staff who give endless hours for love of our mission and for our moms who are many times at fathomless lows. Pray for them and we will pray for you, so all may perceive Christ in their lives making each one of us more serene, more blissful and more open to the inner workings of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in our lives day by day. God bless you my friends.
Love & prayers,