Mission Was Lisa’s Light at the End of the Tunnel
The photo, of Lisa and three of her sons in their room at the O.U.R. Mission Home, reminds her of a time when she was penniless, scared and all alone. But it also represents the start of a new life for the family.
“It was our light at the end of the tunnel,” Lisa said of her time at the Mission. “And I will always be grateful for that.”
Lisa walked into the Mission in March 1993 with three young sons and was pregnant with a fourth. An Ohio native, she had one son, Robert, when she moved to Florida in 1988 after being discharged from the U.S. Marine Corps. She eventually got married and had two more sons, Jimmy and Justin, but the marriage disintegrated.
“He was emotionally abusive and he was getting physically abusive,” she said. “My son Justin was one and a half years old and he would put his hands over his ears and start shaking whenever his father came in the room. I saw that and I knew I had to get out of there.”
Lisa and the boys left, but it was impossible for a single mother of three to make ends meet on the money she made as a bus driver. And, to add to the stress, she found out she was pregnant.
Lisa and the boys moved in with a family friend but she didn’t want to overstay her welcome.
“We never had any problems, but it’s a lot to ask of someone to put up with three kids for more than a couple months,” Lisa said. “Besides, we needed a place to call home.”
Lisa had heard about the Mission and applied. After a short wait, she and the boys were admitted into the program. Lisa already had her high school diploma and didn’t need job training, but she took Bible classes that helped her grow in her faith.
“During my time at the Mission I became reacquainted with God,” she said. “I was raised in a Christian home but had gotten away from it. Being there revitalized my relationship with Him.”
Meanwhile, the boys enjoyed the stability the Mission provided.
“They still talk about it today as one of the best times of their lives,” Lisa said. “Christmas was especially good. It was great to be around people who cared.”
Lisa had her fourth son, DeJuan, while at the Mission. She moved out in early 1994. Today, nearly 20 years later she lives in Pine Hills and works for a Canadian insurance brokerage firm. She remains grateful for the help she received while at the Mission, and even as the family left.
“When we moved out, they helped us furnish our apartment with things from the bargain store,” Lisa said. “The kids had a bed and so did I. They made sure we had everything we needed.”
Each day, O.U.R. Mission Home offers life-changing care to nearly 33 families, Lisa’s. Help create more stories of life transformation through your support today. Each gift of $26.82 provides a hot meal and life changing care for a homeless man, woman or child in Central Florida!