We want to help restore ministers and their families to spiritual wholeness and marital hope.
When my sin of unfaithfulness was discovered back in 1999, my family had no affordable place to live that made sense to us. My brother’s church in Sumner, WA brought us to the Pacific Northwest and enfolded us into their lives. They gave me a job razing a house next door to the parsonage for $10 an hour. They paid for Nette and me to go to counseling for over a year.
As much as the leadership of the church tried to help us (and they did more than I can ever repay), there was a threshold they couldn’t cross due to lack of experience. I remember going to the bookstore looking for hours for specific help on how a pastor and his wife come back from this kind of thing. What I found was either shallow or condemnatory. The counseling we could afford was fine as far as it went; retreat centers were too expensive. What we ached for was a brother and sister who had been down the same path and not only survived, but who were now thriving. I knew of no one like this.
Nette and I were praying one time and felt that if the Lord would have us, we would love to be that couple, to spend our days ministering to ministers who are broken, frayed and in need of a safe place to be spiritually restored. We see an all too prevalent need and feel called to fill it. We offer over a decade of restored marriage and hearts longing to help. We feel strongly that we have the bandwidth and calling to minister in this way.
A few years ago we changed the name of our church to Restoration Church Mukilteo to strongly reflect the tone and tenor of our focus. We both are committed to ministering to minsters. As a model for this ministry, we will be partnering with City of Refuge out of First Baptist Church of Woodstock, GA (www.fbcw.org/community/city-of-refuge) as part of Restoration Ministries.
Because of our personal restoration and passion, God has put before us an opportunity to minister in ways that I never had the privilege to receive. Next door to our church is an old house (1930s) that is being renovated. It goes on the rental market in a few weeks and we feel it would be a perfect Restoration House. It would provide a place for a minister and family to live rent free, while we love them back to life. The rent and utilities will run in the neighborhood of $1500 per month. We have no money for this in our church budget. Would you and your church to prayerfully consider helping us make this rental payment each month for three years?
The ministry of restoration has been around a long time. Without restoration, Moses would have been a shepherd the rest of his life. Without restoration, Elijah would still be pouting under a broom tree, David would never have written some of his best Psalms, and Jonah would have been fish poop on the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea. Without restoration, Peter would have finished his days fishing and John Mark would have never written one of our Gospels.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 2 Cor. 1:3-4
Would you and/or your church consider making this Kingdom investment? It doesn’t matter how much or how little you can give. A little becomes much in nailed scared hands. If the hundred and fifty or so that read my blogs and have followed our journey gave 10.00 a month we could do this. If you feel so inclined to give, please click on the following link for instructions. http://www.restoration-ministries.info/
I shudder to think what would have happened to the Chambers family had there not been a safe place to land back in 1999. Today, I have a healthy marriage of 31 years, a son going into the ministry and another one who just returned from a mission trip in Mexico. Life is great—-praise be to God. We want to pay it forward.
Nette and I are going to pray just before I hit “send” and this shoots into cyber space that…
The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.
Joe and Nette