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Why April 29, 2012 is an important date

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One step forward, two steps back.

Two steps forward, one step back. 

It may sound like a country line dance but it’s the reality of starting something from scratch. For every yes we get , we also get 4 no’s. For every step forward we seem to have to take 2 steps back. 

We move forward in church support and then realize we don’t have licensing determined because we don’t have the house yet. Some people don’t think they can invest in The Sparrow’s Nest because frankly, we don’t have The Nest yet. We apply for our maternity home tax credit but don’t have our letter of standing with Children’s Services because we don’t have the house yet for The Sparrow’s Nest. 

Do you see the common thread?

We don’t have the house yet.

I don’t want you to focus on the don’t part. I want you to focus on the yet part. 

I feel very strongly that this piece of the puzzle in within our grasp.It is 1 of 2 main goals our Board of Directors have adopted in 2012. Obtaining The Nest may be 2 weeks away or maybe only 3 months away. But I wanted to give you an opportunity to boldly pray that The Nest is secured by a very specific date.

April 29, 2012

This date could mean an actual house, it could mean land, it could mean plans to build with an end date. Whatever it means, we’re turning this over to God. Just like Nehemiah (Nehemiah 4), we’re not getting off the wall to the negativity of what we don’t have. We’re celebrating what God has already given us.(Nehemiah 12). 

Do us a favor, share this date with your church, your small group, your Sunday School class, your bible study and then let’s stand back and watch God move a mountain. Join us in writing a big ole’ red circle around April 29, 2012. 

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Second Round of Grow St. Louis! We made it!

VOTE TO GROW ST. LOUIS

 

Monsanto has a long history of providing generous support to the St. Louis region, donating approximately $9 million last year and more than $97 million since 2000. Now is your chance to vote for the St. Louis area non-profit projects you think Monsanto should support.

 

Almost 160 St. Louis area non-profits, including The Sparrow’s Nest, have submitted entries into Monsanto’s Grow St. Louis contest. Public voting will determine the top three winners of $15,000, $10,000 and $5,000 grants from Monsanto.

 

You are invited to http://www.stlgrown.com to vote for The Sparrow’s Nest: Build The Nest Project. You can vote 1 time per day from Jan. 9 through Jan. 29. 

So vote daily!

 

Our project entry is called Build The Nest. This goal of this project is to raise funds to build the future home of The Sparrow’s Nest Maternity Home. The mission of Sparrow is to provide a Christ-centered shelter and to educate homeless, pregnant, and parenting young women by providing me a wide range of services that empower to make positive, and healthy life decisions for themselves and their babies. 

 

This is an opportunity for all St. Louisans to have a voice in choosing projects they think will most help Grow St. Louis. We hope you’ll support us by voting for our entry – and spread the word to all your friends and family members to vote for us, too!

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I said a dirty word today

A teacher once made the mistake of telling me we all have 24 hours in a day. It’s just a matter of how we use them. I ingrained that into my DNA to mean I could use all 24 hours. As a result I have a really hard time saying no. It’s the eternal optimist in me that really believe I can have it all, be it all, do it all if given enough time. No, is a dirty word for me. 

Like right now, I’m sick in bed. I should be telling myself no but even that seems impossible. 

But today, like too many other days, I had to tell not one but two people no. 

I received 2 more phone calls today of young, pregnant girls needing a safe place to stay. 

I had to tell them “No, we aren’t open yet. No, I can’t help you. No, I don’t know of any other place in the area that can take you. No, I don’t know what to tell you.”

It breaks my heart. I know I will always have to use that word. Even when we do open, we won’t have enough space for every girl that needs a home. Some girls won’t be a healthy match for our program. 

But for the ones that do, I pray very soon we have a warm, safe, inviting place for them to stay, and figure out their next steps. 

He didn’t exactly smile when we shook hands

In fact, I was a bit intimidated by the presumably 6″4′ young black teenager I was meeting. I was in the very small kitchen of a very small house right in between Kingshighway and Martin Luthur King Dr. The walls had been patched with cardboard to keep out the cold. Five African Americans were wondering what the heck I was doing there. Not exactly where you would normally find a tall, very white, very middle class woman in her minivan.

I figured out pretty quickly why he was upset. His girlfriend had to leave St.Louis because she didn’t have a safe place to stay. She was pregnant with his baby. I was taking her to Springfield to a new maternity home that had space for her. He had never been out of St. Louis. There wasn’t a shelter in St. Louis that had space for her. To him, I might as well have been taking her to the edge of the world.

He started drilling me with a million questions at once.

Will she be able to come back to St. Louis?

Will they let the daddy of the baby come see her? That’s me.

What is this place again?

We want to get married. Can we still do that?

Can we call each other?

Our baby shower is in March. Can we still have it then?

Will they give her food and take care of her? She hasn’t really had no heat or hot water in awhile.

She don’t have a lot of money. Does it cost?

I want to take care of both of them right now but you know, I can’t just yet.

When he figured out I was very much on their side and was there to help, this hard, young man from very rough background softened before me as he turned to say goodbye to his girlfriend. I left them alone and headed to the driver’s side but caught a glimpse of something so tender in the rear view mirror. I saw this intimidating young man carefully  bend down to take his tiny girlfriend into his arms while they stood shivering in the cold. I saw him start tearing up as he tried one more time to get her stay, and for her to tell him this was what they had to do right now. As we drove away, I saw him grab his cell, and then I heard her cell phone ring as he called to tell her he would try to talk to her everyday and that he was going to find where the nearest bus station was.

I was so happy to be able to finally help one of the girls that I keep getting phone calls for. Here was a maternity home that had just opened up its first phase and they actually had space for this young lady. But I have to admit it broke my heart to take this young woman far away from everything she had ever known. Sometimes that’s a good thing. But sometimes, when you actually see a young man wanting to be a good daddy, well, you have to wonder how it’s going to work when his girlfriend is so far away.

It was just one more reason to keep pushing towards getting The Sparrow’s Nest opened. We are blessed to be able to have maternity homes in Missouri who want to work together for these babies and their young mamas. But do we really have to send one of our own away? Shouldn’t we try to keep these young families together and mentor everyone involved around this precious little baby?