It's our 4th Anniversary here at Journey to Hope and we find ourselves very grateful for every day we have been in business, and for each and every person who has crossed through our front doors from January 31, 2011 until now! We will be celebrating all week this week with everyone that comes in, and will give you an opportunity to share what Journey to Hope means to you.
For those of you not familiar with the story of how we came to be, it bears repeating especially this anniversary week. Before Journey to Hope, I was on staff as the therapist/counselor at Stafford Crossing Community Church for 4 years, and during the fall of 2010, I traveled to India to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Bombay Teen Challenge. During a home church service there, it became very clear to me through the message that God was calling me to step out in faith and start a private practice counseling ministry. The person delivered a message out of Exodus about when God has put something in your heart to do, don't delay and trust Him with the details. When I got back to Virginia, I spoke with my husband and my best friend, and we began to pray about how to go about getting this vision of the heart into reality. The three of us formed a partnership, and my parents and my youngest son were also a very big help in getting us off the ground. Stafford Crossing partnered with us and continues to partner with us now 4 years later to help provide care and counseling for others.
We found a beautiful office space at Lafayette Station. We had looked at so many and nothing felt right, and then the first floor of Lafayette Station spoke to us. We loved the old building, we loved the wide paneled floors and high ceilings,and we loved the vault, so that people would know they were "safe" with us! It also had a separate exit door, so I could protect privacy for clients! A win-win. We signed papers with Joe Hicks and Joe Wilson, the building owners, and the Journey to Hope began. My last day with Stafford Crossing was January 30, 2011 and our first day for Journey to Hope was January 31, 2011. Fear was constant in those days, and I just had to keep trusting God, just like I had heard in October, that He would send clients, even though we were not on any insurance panels yet. For 5 months, we worked to get on insurance panels, and yet God kept our calendar completely full every single day.
He still does. He sends people from insurance, from other churches, from everywhere. We have been delighted to partner with other churches in our area, and want to say thank you for trusting us with your precious folks, and we have partnered with other local organizations like Fredericksburg Teen Challenge and Beauty for Ashes Womens and Childrens Home, Hope House and some local schools who have also referred clients. God has overwhelmed us with His goodness. And so, we look ahead, and trust Him to continue the work that only He can do through us here at Journey to Hope.
Also, very, very, thankful for our beautiful staff - Sharla Haasenritter, Andy Walden, Rosemarie Jones, Gloria Elder, Laura Diamantopoulos, Doug Thrash and Drew Walden. You are all the best. Much love and Blessings, Susie