My first time coming to the Cookeville Rescue Mission is a day I’ll never forget. I showed up on a Friday morning in February ready to learn about the rescue mission and see how I could offer my skills to help. I’m just a college student whose teacher required us to serve at a non-profit, but I was still excited to help in any way I could. I imagined I would spend the day learning about the mission from the employees that served there in the office on the business side of things. Instead, I was taken to the family lodge where many of the residents are during the day. It was there that I learned all about what the rescue mission does in the lives of the homeless.
My morning started by being welcomed into a bible study with some of the women there. I was humbled by the openness of the ladies in sharing their struggles. After the bible study, one of the ladies fixed me some coffee and another shared with me how God has changed her life and her goals of getting her life back on track. After this, I got to help the ladies cook lunch, and they sure taught me a lot about cooking! Following lunch, I interviewed a family that had been helped through the rescue mission, a man that works at the mission who used to be a resident, and another employee whose life was also changed through the mission.
It was so awesome to see first-hand how the homeless are being transformed physically and spiritually through the rescue mission. With my own eyes, I saw the residents receive their physical needs such as food, water, shelter, and clothing. For more long-term assistance, I saw and heard about programs that help these men, women, and families find housing, jobs, and recovery programs. And most importantly, I saw spiritual life transformation through Jesus right there, not only in the morning devotion, but in the way the residents and employees loved and poured into one another.
Through this, I was reminded of the sacrifice Jesus made for each of us by dying on the cross and rising three days later. His reckless love is something that is available to all of us, no matter what our past or circumstances look like. This time of year, during the Easter Season, is a time we are reminded of this message of hope and resurrection. It is a time when we reflect on our own rescuing that is only possible with God.
In a similar way, God calls us to be his hands and feet to rescue others around us. It is not through ourselves, but through him that we are called to reach out and care for the homeless, the widows, and the children. At the Cookeville Rescue Mission, our mission is to serve Christ by addressing the physical, spiritual, emotional, and social well-being of the impoverished and destitute by providing Christ-centered rescue, recovery and restoration to those whom God leads to our doors.
In 2017, we provided housing for 993 men, women, and children and served 32,501 meals. Additionally, our attendance at morning and evening devotionals and Life Recovery groups totaled 24,265. These may seem like big numbers, but even just one life changed is a testimony of God’s grace and love.
As we celebrate the resurrection of our savior Jesus Christ this Easter Season, we ask that you remember the homeless men, women, and children that we serve at the rescue mission. Through your donation, you can be a hand in the physical and spiritual life transformation that is happening in the lives of the homeless at the Cookeville Rescue Mission. Thank you for remembering us this season and being a part of the Cookeville Rescue Mission family.