“I came to the Mission to help, but I soon realized, serving those in need helped me probably more than it helped them,” said Justin.
“Initially, I was looking for a place to volunteer with my co-workers. My brother is a youth pastor and had told me about Nashville Rescue Mission. It was within walking distance from my job, so it seemed like a good choice.”
A visit to the Mission’s website sealed the deal. “When I saw the Mission is 100% faith-based and takes no money from the government, that meant something to me. I knew this was a place I wanted to be a part of.”
Justin ended up leaving that job, but decided to continue volunteering in the kitchen at the Mission on a regular basis. He found encouragement in hearing the stories of lives being transformed through the Mission’s programs and services.
“Serving at the Mission was humbling,” Justin said. “When I lost my job, I quickly realized it could be worse. As I served alongside men in the Mission’s program, I was inspired by their stories. It certainly increased my faith.”
While looking for a new job, Justin found ways to stay busy, volunteering at the Mission two to three days a week, sometimes every day. “It was grateful to have something productive to do with my free time.”
Even after finding a new job, Justin continues to serve. “I’ve made friends with many of the men I’ve met at the Mission,” he said. “It’s been a blessing to me to see the transformation that has taken place in each of their lives. I can see the ‘light’ of Christ in them shining brightly. It’s been amazing to witness the transformation that has taken place in their lives.”
Justin has also discovered a new community of friends with other volunteers he’s met during his time of serving. “If you think this is just about feeding the homeless, it’s not. It’s so much more. I now have a community of friends. People I hang out with on the weekends. Friends I now do life with.”
Volunteering at Nashville Rescue Mission has put things in perspective for Justin. “There are times when I’ve let things really get me down. But coming to the Mission and serving those in need has changed me. It is one of the most inspirational things I have ever experienced. After meeting so many men, who have come through the Mission’s program make lasting changes in their life… I’m inspired to be a more godly man.”