November 2018 ~ Newsletter
West Michigan Northern Indiana Men's Camp 2018
God has created each one of us for enjoy relationship and what a gift it is to share our lives and our hearts with others. On September 26th-28th, we had the awesome privilege of taking 28 guys from the Adult Rehabilitation Center to the 2018 West Michigan Northern Indian Men's Camp at Little Pine Island. The guys were able to enjoy a relaxing weekend of fun, fellowship and spiritual encouragement. We are thrilled that these men seized the opportunity to connect with other guys and have some fun in their recovery!
We arrived at camp on Friday evening, got settled into our cabins and went into our first session of worship and teaching on "Encouragement for the Battle". After that, the night was ours. Some of the guys went to bed; others sat down to watch a movie and have a snack; and still others went fishing in the dark. Saturday morning brought a clear, beautiful serenity to the campground. We also enjoyed more time of singing to our awesome God and learning about the ways he encourages us. Then the opportunities for fun and/or relaxation began!

In recovery, it is so important to find time to unwind, have fun and relax because it's easy to get caught up in the stress that life throws at us and to get burned out. Fun in recovery is not always easy to find and that's why we are so grateful that these guys had the chance to enjoy this Men's Camp.

Saturday afternoon was filled with activities and friendly competition. There were card tournaments, a darts tournament, a home run derby, skeet shooting, archery, tomahawk throwing, fishing tournament and horseshoes tournament, just to name a few. The guys also had the choice to go canoeing or just fishing for fun; plus, there was a silent auction, chili cook-off and pinewood derby.
At the Adult Rehabilitation Center, the guys designed and painted their pinewood derby cars for maximum performance. Unfortunately, our crew didn't break any speed records or win many races, but they did have fun in the process, and we consider that to be a win! Although, the pinewood derby was not our best moment, we did have champions in many of the other tournaments on Saturday.
These are the guys that rocked it out in various tournaments on Saturday; 13 different guys won medals and we took home 16 medals altogether.

Saturday evening brought more praise, worship and encouragement, followed by food and fellowship. It was only once the day had drawn to a close that the rain started and, at that point, provided perfect sleeping weather. Sunday morning brought some more rain, but also another opportunity to praise an awesome God and receive some final bits of encouragement before we went our separate ways. We are so grateful for all the guys that went on this camping trip and, again, it is a gift for us to be able to share these victories and times of growth in their recovery journey. We love these men and are excited to see what God continues to work in their future!
October Beneficiary of the Month

Just as we grow and make progress by identifying our shortcomings, it is equally important to recognize and celebrate where we make progress. That is why we make a point to award one man or women the honor of Beneficiary of the Month. We would like to extend a big congratulations to October's Beneficiary of the Month, Marc Cox!

We asked Mr. Marc Cox to describe his hobbies, family, or any other personal information, about his life outside of the program. Marc said that he enjoys spending his free time reading and writing, and he mentioned that he occasionally likes to paint and draw as well. In terms of family, Marc commented "I am fairly close with my parents, who are very supportive. I am also very fond of my 'children' (Oh okay, they're cats, but still, small, furry kids to me, darn it) [named] Poppy Muffin and Chairman Meow".

Marc entered The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center on May 30th of this year and he is currently in Level 4 of the program. Each level of the program is designed to challenge beneficiaries in a way that encourages growth, and we are pleased to say that Marc has made exceptional strides in a positive direction. When we asked Marc what kind of progress he feels he's made, and how the program has helped him, he commented "I've made a good amount of progress, both in remaining clean of drugs and working on the underlying issues that drove my use. The ARC [Adult Rehabilitation Center] has provided a good venue to take a "time out" and do some serious work on myself" .

Marc's work therapy assignment is 3rd floor maintenance. As part of this duty, Marc is responsible for keeping the Chapel, bathrooms and various other rooms and facilities on the 3rd floor clean, and in good order. Marc has done an awesome job with these responsibilities and we are extremely appreciative of the diligent care he has put into his work therapy assignment. Marc said that work therapy has given him lots of quiet time to reflect and that he enjoys working by himself.

Once again, we say congratulations to Marc Cox for earning the honor of Beneficiary of the Month! We also want to encourage him to keep making positive choices and to seek opportunities to grow in order to maintain a healthy life-style. Great job Marc!
Thought of the Month
I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit.
John 15:5
Jesus makes a clear distinction between the vine and the branch.... He is the vine; we are the branches. The two are joined, but not one. The common denominator in nature is the sap. The sap is the life of the vine and its branches. Cut off the flow of sap to the branch, and it slowly withers and dies. As the branch draws its life from the vine, so we draw life from Christ... His life is made available through the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

~Charles F. Stanley
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