Lily finds joy in using her talents to serve others
After 19 years as a librarian, Lily didn’t expect finding a new job would be so difficult when her husband’s job brought them to Nashville. With no job prospects, Lily joined a women’s circle at church to keep her busy.
“When I heard the group leader say the Hope Center needed help with a library,” says Lily, “my ears perked up. I raised my hand and said, ‘Well, I don’t know what the Hope Center is, but I do know how to organize a library.’ Turns out there was also a retired librarian in the group. Talk about God having a plan.”
After learning more about the Hope Center and how desperately they needed books for their library, Lily and her circle jumped in and got the ball rolling. Books were sorted, marked and shelved.
Books, Books and More Books
“Once I saw what we had to work with I shared the need for more books with my church,” says Lily. “There was an overwhelming response. The number of children’s books quadrupled. We also received donations of bookcases, which has helped us in growing this library.”
“It’s such a joy to watch the transformation process that is taking place in the lives of these ladies. It’s amazing.”
With still more time on her hands, Lily was looking for something to do when she heard there was a need for additional help in the office at the Hope Center. She began volunteering a couple of hours each week, answering phones and performing other administrative duties.
A Blessing Received
“As much as I love working in a library and helping the Hope Center with their library, I must admit, my time in the office has blessed me in more ways than I expected,” shares Lily. “Yes, I’m doing something productive and filling a need, but God has also given me the opportunity to watch these ladies go through a transformation process that is hard to describe. I’m so grateful I’ve had the chance to witness it.”
“It was probably in the first couple of weeks of volunteering that I noticed a young woman who appeared frightened, sad and beaten down,” says Lily. “It was truly heart breaking. But over time I saw the evidence of God’s work in her. As the weeks passed I saw her become more confident and peaceful. She looked me in the eye and even smiled. I recently attended graduation and when I saw her up on the stage, I almost didn’t recognize her. She looked like a completely different person. She had a radiant smile and a glow of joyfulness that wasn’t there before. Being a witness to this amazing transformation was such a blessing.”
Have any books laying around that you don’t want anymore? Here’s what the Mission is looking for:
Spiritual Growth Books
Donations can be dropped off at the Mission’s Donation Center, 616 7th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203, Monday through Saturday from 7 am to 7 pm.