Even though February is the shortest month of the year, we still managed to hold two Legacy Programs: a Men’s Legacy Program for First Responders and a Women’s Legacy Program, both at our California location at SkyRose Ranch in San Miguel. Despite the challenges severe winter storms had thrown at our teams facilitating the programs — torrential rains, flooding, mud slides and even several inches of snow — God met our Warriors right where they were, and significant life change took place.
We had an opportunity to sit one-on-one with a couple of this month’s Warriors and chat about their experience at the Legacy Program. One of the men, Brandon from Houston, Texas, shared how many work and life related issues brought him to the Legacy Program: losing 20 officers from his agency over the last 20 years, alcohol abuse, and a near-fatal heart attack at age 35 to name a few. “I haven’t slept in three years without drinking myself to sleep. And this entire week, there’s a peace about me that I can’t even explain and it’s the best sleep I’ve had in years. And there’s only one explanation for it, and that’s that God’s in my heart again.”
When asked what the turning point was for him, Brandon said, “I got a lot off my chest, I feel like I got a do-over, and it wouldn’t be possible without Mighty Oaks, the Team Leaders and their stories, all the guys here that are just like me. If you had asked me two weeks ago if I could sit here and even remotely talk about this situation without, you know, just crying it out, I wouldn’t have been able to do it.”
“Going forward,” Brandon continued, “after the Mighty Oaks Legacy Program, I am ready to start the rest of my life and have it be the best of my life. And I know I can do that with [the staff and fellow participants’] help and God’s help. But most importantly God’s help. I am extremely grateful for these guys and the Program. If you’re struggling, like I was, and all these other guys, just fill the application out. It will change your life. This [the Bible] will change your life. These guys here will change your life.”
Mighty Oaks Womens Legacy Program
The impact was no less significant for the Lady Warriors. Cayce, an EMT/Firefighter from Oregon, shared that her road to Mighty Oaks was rough because she had “pushed down everything for so long, that finally I just couldn’t anymore, and my life started falling apart. I felt that there was something wrong with me. I felt I was too messed up and beyond repair. Ultimately, I felt like I was broken. I asked, “Why me?” What did I do to deserve this when all I ever wanted to do was to help others?”
However, through digging in and putting her all into the Program, Cayce was able to break those chains of bondage and find freedom in a renewed relationship with Christ. “This week, I re-surrendered my life to God. I have learned to grow my faith in God and to find my worth in God. God does not make a mistake. I am His masterpiece, and I am not broken.
When I go home, I’m going to focus on completely surrendering to God, listen to what He’s telling me and calling on me to do. After this week, I feel more connected to God.
When I go home, I am going to be intentional in all that I do. I’m going to stop the self-doubt, and I am going to remember that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I’m going to start organizing my life better. I am going to find a church. I am going to start taking better care of my health. I believe my life will start to come back together, my husband and I will have a better relationship, and most importantly my relationship with God will grow.”
And these are only two of the dozens of triumphant stories that came out of the two Programs this month! What an amazing God we serve! And what amazing and selfless donors and supporters YOU are! These transformative stories are made possible through your prayers and financial support. You make this possible. So, thank you for partnering with us as together we are Saving Lives, Restoring Families, and Changing Legacies!