The photo above was taken after an evening of Bible study, exercise, good food and a Christian movie.  Looking at the photo warms my heart because I know the behind the scenes story of each of these young men.  Let me share some excerpts of what I see.

  • A young man, who two years ago was addicted to heroin, that has become a powerful minister of God’s grace and a fine father
  • A 23 year old man who was using and dealing drugs is now in school to earn his high school diploma and is beginning to seek the things of God through church and Bible study
  • A young minister, who fell into addiction, was surrounded by his friends who are standing alongside of him to help restore him to usefulness in the body of Christ
  • A homeless man stepping into church to embrace godly men and principals
  • A man being restored to a career after carrying all of his possessions in a back pack in freezing cold weather
  • A group of men willing to run to the cry of a friend that has lost hope and sees no way off the ledge of destruction
  • Young men attending Bible school together to be built up and sent out as ministers

I see new hope in Philly.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

... to give you a future and a HOPE...

by  Bill Pruitt

In Warren Wiersbe’s commentary on Jeremiah 29:10-14 he says this “True hope is based on the revealed word of God…“ God makes his plans for His people, and they are good plans that ultimately bring hope and peace.  Therefore, there is no need to be afraid or discouraged.

In every situation  God’s people have the responsibility to seek the Lord, pray, and ask Him to fulfill His promises, for the Word and prayer go together ( Acts 6:4).  The purpose of chastening is that we might seek the Lord, confess our sins, and draw near to him.

This has certainly proven to be true in my own life.  As I keep His commandments out of a love relationship with Jesus He begins to show up in my life (John 14:21).  Fear and chaos turn to peace (14:27) and joy (15:10, 11).  While my circumstances might be filled with tribulation (John 16:33) I can still rest in Jesus.  My joy is based on the truth of God’s Word and His promises (James 1:2-4).  As we walk with the Lord over time we have the opportunity to see these truths played out in our own journey. 

"One of the primary goals of New Hope Philly is to offer the Hope of Christ to a community that has lost sight of the need for God in their lives." As we live and form relationships in the neighborhood, we model Biblical principles and teach that God will deliver them if they seek Him with all their heart.  And as we share Christ we have the privilege of seeing God on the move and lives being changed one person at a time.

New Hope Philly staff member, Troy Fink making a difference one man at a time.  Pictured here at America's Keswick with our Friends Ben & H.