Summer News!
              
July 5, 2016            
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Dear Forever Family,      
              
     Our last ministry newsletter in early Spring probably sounded a bit bleak. It had been a hard few months and while I try my best to be positive, I also believe it is important to be real. The world loves the words transparent and authentic, but I like "real." Jesus kept it real and told us that in this world we would have trouble...but He has overcome the world. As the months have progressed this year, so has my outlook. While being as productive as ever (better than just busy) God's beautiful light has shone down to remind me of His love and care, and I have felt His nearness. Some of that love and care came in the form of encouragement from many of you. The lovely cards, donations, gifts, and kind words meant the world to me and those we serve. 

Thank you for your love and care support. 

     I hope you will take time to read the brief updates below of what we have been up to in the ministry work. Please know that your support makes you a partner in this work, therefore these are your accomplishments and victories as well.  

     Your continued prayers and support are greatly cherished. The year is only half complete and there are challenging days ahead. In addition to my normal ministry responsibilities, I am in the middle of my internship with Hope Counseling & Recovery in Weaverville, NC. When that is finished, I have a five-week Senior Seminar in September and then I will have completed my Bachelor of Science in Psychology & Human Services and will graduate from Montreat College in December. Upon completion of college in the fall, I am scheduled to have surgery that will have me out for about 8 weeks. During my recovery period, I will be working from my home office, both Skype counseling and catching up on administrative tasks. Again, your prayers are much appreciated. 

     Hope for Wholeness has a one-day Hope Rising fall conference planned in Spartanburg, SC for November 12th, but because of my surgery, sadly I will not be able to participate. If you are in the area and can volunteer or help in any way, please contact McKrae Game at mckrae@hopeforwholeness.org.  

     Again, thank you for all you do to help us in this work. You mean more to me than words can express. 

Living Loved,
Meleah
Hope for Wholeness Summer Conference Report

Our annual summer conference was held in June at Ridgecrest conference center near Black Mountain, NC. It was the best yet! 

Our ministry had 10 participants in attendance (some are pictured above) and several volunteered. McKrae Game said to me shortly before the event, "I can tell a person's heart by how they volunteer and Jeremy Mace has a great heart. He signed up to help with almost everything!" I was so proud of our Jeremy. He is a great guy! 

Our very own Sonya Bolt shared her testimony and did an amazing job! 
  I have so enjoyed leading the women at the conference for the past couple of years. Below is a picture of some of us out on the town in downtown Asheville on Freedom Friday. We were visiting the famous French Broad Chocolate Lounge. Upon our return we enjoyed Smore's over a bonfire at Ridgecrest. 

 
We had wonderful speakers like Bob Hamp and Jeanette Howard as well as Tom and Donna Cole and so many other gifted speakers and teachers. I hope you will consider joining us for next year's event. Once you do, you will want to attend year after year. The move of the Spirit at these conferences and the presence of Jesus is palpable. I have attended many conferences all over the country but nothing holds a candle to these events. Mark your calendars for next year: July 12-15, 2017
Board of Directors Update
I am excited to announce that we held our first official board meeting since becoming a 501c3 non-profit. Melissa Jo Wilson (pictured below with me) was voted Board Chairperson. Ed Reigner was approved as Board Secretary/Treasurer. Our bylaws were approved, and we have begun working on our organization's Policies & Procedures. Please pray for the board members (MJ Wilson, Ed Reigner, Mollie Stafford and myself) as we plan for the coming year. If you are willing to serve in this capacity, please let me know. We need your input. 
MJ did a marvelous job as emcee of the HFW conference at Ridgecrest this summer and also co-taught a workshop with me on living in God's love. Because I was sick for most of the conference, she and a few other of the female leaders really stepped up to take a leading role with the women. I so appreciate this group of female leaders! 
Our Prayers & Hearts for Orlando
Our hearts are broken over the devastation wreaked upon the LGBT community of Orlando. During the days following this horrific tragedy, I was so encouraged by
a couple of Christian friends who emailed me to ask for my guidance on how to minister to the gay community there. They were headed down to Orlando. During the duration of their time in ministry to that community, I received daily email updates recounting many of their experiences and the ways in which God provided them opportunity after opportunity to love on that grieving community. These friends never once sang their own praises or even posted about it on social media.  Their motives were only to show God's love and care and from what I read, they did so beautifully! I was so grateful to God to know that there are Christians who really do care about this community of people.

The following was my prayer on social media, "Lord God please, please bring your compassion to all our hearts. Help us to see others, especially those who are different from us whether gay, straight, Muslim, Christian, black, white, liberal or conservative...no matter the difference Lord, help us see others the way you see them and treat them as you would. Help us, as your children, to live in a way that draws others to you...whether through our words, deeds or even social media interactions. In Jesus Name, Amen."

The Orlando Victims

These people are God's beautiful creation. Some may very well be with Him now. We can only hope and pray they all knew Jesus as Savior and Lord. For those who may doubt, I would remind you that God has convinced me that I was 100% born again for the 10 years I lived as a lesbian woman. There was nothing in my life that would have communicated my salvation during that period, but I had the opportunity to return "home" as the prodigal son did. The thief hanging on the cross next to Jesus did not have a chance to return. He simply believed on Jesus in the last moments of his life and Jesus said, "This day you will be with me in Paradise" (Luke 23:43). There were many nights that I spent in a gay bar just like the one these were in and this could have been me. Please continue to pray for the family and friends of these victims. 
Ministry Services
Our men's support group meets twice monthly in Hendersonville on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month.

We continue to offer in-person and Skype lay-counseling/mentoring for men, women, teens and families affected by homosexuality. 

If your church or organization would like to know more about how to minister to those dealing with homosexuality, please contact us at meleah@newbeginningsupport.org or v isit our website at: newbeginningsupport.org
 We still need your support. Please mail your donation checks to:
PO Box 12 Hendersonville, NC 28793 
or donate through our secure PayPal account below.
 
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