Although it is a great privilege to be in the leadership position I am in at the Denver Rescue Mission, there are some times when the work here is very hard. One of the most difficult things I do is take calls from parents, siblings, spouses, and other loved ones who want to help a family member who has chosen a life of addiction. They call to ask about our New Life Program and how the one they care about can enroll. The stories they share with me are always gut-wrenching, as often the addicted loved one has alienated everyone in his family, and calling the Mission is an act of last resort.
My heart breaks as they rehearse the tangled story of their addicted family member. More often than not, the family member has been in more than one rehab program already, and the caller is hopeful our program is different. Even though these loved ones may be tearful as they share their frustration and pain, I have the wonderful privilege of offering them hope. Our program is different, first, because it is free (which is only possible with your help!). Second, our program is long term—13 to 27 months. And most importantly, our New Life Program is centered on the belief that Jesus Christ can make a difference in someone’s life, no matter what has happened.
In this month’s Changing Lives newsletter, you will read about New Life Program graduate George and how his life was changed while at the Mission. But before that change could begin, there was a couple who reached out to George and made that phone call to us to find out how to get help. They were not family members, just people who cared about others. They believed that George, like other addicts, could have a happier, better life. This couple, like the family members who call me, are the true heroes because they were willing to go to bat for a man like George.
If you know someone out there who needs help, call and find out more. Ask for our Intake Chaplains, Jay Krebs at our Lawrence Street Shelter or Jack MacDonald at Harvest Farm, by calling 303.297.1815. Just as we have for the last 120 years, we want to keep providing hope—and it may just be a phone call away.