By a Joy Junction Staff Member (JBF)
Do you ever dream about the future?
Are there things in your life that you’d like to change?
When the new year approaches, many of us begin to think about how the last year went and what can be altered, upgraded, or changed to make things better.
Often, we begin thinking about New Year’s resolutions concerning things like wanting to lose weight, or exercise more, or get out of debt, or something similar.
Then, at times, when we feel discouraged about the previous year, we seek what may seem like radical changes – for example, trying a new hair style, or moving to a new location, or choosing to have a baby, or getting a new type of job.
In addition to the things already mentioned, there are the mental and emotional aspects of seeking something new and different. Will we choose to seek out the positive, instead of focusing on the negative? Will we choose to act in love instead of through hate?
Each of these things may encourage us for a little while, and help us feel like things are moving in the right direction. But, when you are homeless, those things may take on a different meaning.
Those who depend on others for a roof over their head, food to eat, and safety from the elements, may have no way of getting a haircut, let alone a new hair style. Many would love to have a job, period – there’s no option to change one for another.
Along with that fact, moving to a new location is something they have experienced because they were forced to. Being homeless is usually not a choice.
Is the possible new beginning a reality…
…or just something dreamed about?
For those who are homeless, a new beginning is something that is thought about quite often. It’s hard to be dependent on others. It’s hard not to have money of your own to provide for the needs of your family. It’s hard to watch your children go without food.
At our shelter, a new start can be a reality.
This new year could bring the possibility of a guest actually getting to find a job, and maybe being able to move out of the shelter into a place of their own. Those hopeful thoughts encourage our guests, especially those who have chosen to join our Christ in Power Program. Each day may present new struggles, but many of the program participants try hard to complete the assignments that are required for graduation.
Changing habits and learning to make better decisions is not always easy to do. But, learning about how to have faith in God’s Word (part of the program) provides a strength never before felt, and makes a world of a difference.
Change is possible. A new beginning is possible, even in our “new normal.”
Joy Junction is the largest emergency homeless shelter in New Mexico. We do our best to help each person who arrives on our doorstep. Whether their stay is short or long, it’s our goal to encourage them to look toward the future as bright and productive as they work toward positive change in their lives.