The hardest thing in the world is seeing your child suffer, and Jesse honestly didn’t know if his son, Josh, would even survive having a bad heart . . . and a terrible addiction. With your help, there is always hope: hope for today, hope for tomorrow, and hope for eternity at Nashville Rescue Mission.
The hard times that have hit this country are felt on the sweltering streets of cities like Nashville and rural areas where Jesse and his son, Josh, were just trying to escape hopelessness.
“We lived in a little town where there are more addicts than you can believe: Josh and I probably know them all,” Jesse says. But feeling like there was no way forward to a better future, especially with Josh’s failing health, Jesse remembers Josh admitting, “I can’t do anything.” So in frustration and despair, he turned to drinking.
Meth followed, and Josh’s health deteriorated rapidly. “He’d been getting weaker and weaker over the years,” Jesse recalls—and recounts how they finally got him to a medical facility, where a doctor told Josh, “You have a bad heart. You’re not going to live over a year and a half.”
A heart transplant was the only option, but a nurse told them the supply of good hearts was not very many. “He’s probably going to have a mechanical heart while he’s waiting,” Jesse says, “and a mechanical heart could work for up to four and a half years.”
“We got out of that town,” Jesse says. “If he only had a year and a half to live, he was coming here”—to Nashville, where he was going to spend as much time as he could.
Beyond moving them here, God was also hard at work in the hearts of both son and father—who’d also found himself drawn to meth. “I started doing it when he was doing it,” Jesse admits, “I got off of that. I didn’t want to do it anymore.”
Even more importantly, considering how close to death he still was, Josh says, “I’m so thankful. I just don’t have that urge for it anymore. God took that away from me!”
Then, as God continued working His miracle in Josh’s life, Jesse recalls, “He contacted the hospital where he’d been . . .
They told him to come here: to come to Nashville Rescue Mission.
“We made it here,” Jesse says, thinking, hoping, “They’ll help us somehow.” Jesse found himself praying, “God, we don’t have a home. Maybe this will help us.”
And just in time: “This was right at the end of summer here,” Jesse says. “It was still hot—out in the streets, or in our car,” and he explains how Josh needed to “be able to lie down at any time. So we tried to make it so he’d be comfortable.”
“Lying down out there in the car in a parking lot, it was pretty hot,” Jesse admits. Imagine enduring the Nashville heat like that trying to sleep, trying to heal.
Which is just one reason Jesse gratefully says, “We’ve been here ever since. I literally started crying at church when I told them about Josh . . .”
He was totally healed! Thanks to the Lord!
Jesse will never forget how “they said go over to Vanderbilt and have them check. I’m in the room with the doctor, and he says, ‘You’ve been healed. Go home, have a good life, and don’t do drugs!’”
This father and son are a living testimony to the transformed life found in the Lord and in our care, thanks to the radical hospitality you help share in His name—now and all summer long!