Jackie and Shana at Thistle Farms

A growing problem in the United States is homelessness among women and single moms. Often abuse, poverty and addiction play a role and make it difficult to find sustainable income options. For many years, I sat at the biblical counseling table with women coming out of addiction, loss, and abuse and have found if someone partners with them in overcoming trauma they can be on the road to recovery to becoming fruitful and productive members of community.

Recently, I was watching a classic movie, in which a woman of great beauty had suddenly found herself alone and undesirable. Searching for evidence that her beauty was still intact, she would spend hours in the mirror and looking for adulation from others, only to be devastated because her outward beauty had just simply faded. Feeling empty, her daughter in her wisdom said this to her…”A woman is beautiful when she is loved.” I love that line!

One of my favorite verses is Isaiah 61:3 which says “I have come to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.”

It is the splendor of His love that is beautiful which enables us to be planted on display for His glory.  There are many facets to overcoming homelessness, abuse and addiction but we can start with reaching out and loving people to recovery.