I asked a friend of mine named Zack Moody to do a guest post to tell us about the ministry that he has been working with along with his family. He has been traveling around the United States sharing amazing stories of hope and survival. I will let him give you the full picture of this ministry.
Zack also blogs @ http://zackmoody.com
Reaching the lost and sharing hope with students all across the country…Upward Bound Outreach is making a difference changing lives. Since 1983 when Jeff Moody began Upward Bound Outreach, he has had the opportunity to reach thousands of students as well as adults. Some of these areas of ministry include leading worship at youth conferences and churches, speaking and focusing on family ministries, prison ministry, and several others. Recently a new door opened for the ministry that would change the direction completely. On December 5th, a friend introduced us to the faith-based coordinator of the Florida Juvenile Justice program, which includes all of the Juvenile Prisons and Jails. In the state of Florida, there are 141 different Juvenile Facilities. At the end of January, Upward Bound Outreach headed to Florida and spoke at 23 different facilities. Jeff and his outreach team spent two weeks in Juvenile Centers sharing the love and hope of God. Each day, they spoke to two, if not three, different centers sharing the testimonies of Brryan Jackson and Chris Keith.
Jeff Moody, director of uboutreach.org, speaks boldly and honestly to youth about the choices they make and the future ahead of them. He works closely with his team to present a program that encourages students to realize their past does have to define their future. Jeff ends each program by going to each student individually, shaking their hand, and saying, “You are loved.” This seemingly simple gesture breaks down walls almost immediately. For many, this is the first time someone has told them they are cared for and loved.
Brryan Jackson has a remarkable story of survival. When he was 11 months old, his father injected him with AIDS infected blood to avoid paying child support. At age 5, doctors believed they had done everything they could to save the young boy’s life. Without hope, he was sent home from the hospital to die. By God’s grace he defied the odds. Now 18, Brryan recently graduated from high school. Rejected his entire life, Brryan’s story of God’s embrace will inspire you. After making national and worldwide news, you will be moved by the faith of this young man who loves Jesus.
Chris Keith was five when he was shot in the head by his father during a family murder-suicide. When officials arrived at the home 12 hours later, the family was pronounced dead at the scene. But when Chris was able to crawl closer to the door to be found alive it became a race against time to save the young boy’s life. Chris is now 28; he is married and has a five year old son. His testimony presents a clear understanding that God causes all things to work for the good of those who love Him. Chris says, “If you don’t believe God can create good from evil, take a look at my son, Dylan.” Chris’s main comfort in life has been Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Upward Bound Outreach is a non-profit organization and much of the work they are doing is volunteer and does not have funding. We are currently back in Florida and sharing with over 30 Juvenile Justice Centers. As we share in public schools and juvenile centers, students are being challenged and their hearts are being changed. Upward Bound Outreach demonstrates the love of God in a tangible way and shows students that they can strive for a positive future, regardless of their past.
For us to complete this trip from Missouri to Florida and back, it costs 300 dollars a facility. Therefore, we are asking people to consider this and asking them to pray about it. We currently have 15 people who have supported this trip and need 15 more. If you would like to get involved financially, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get you more information on the ministry.
You are loved.
Please go and check out their ministry.
Then after you have checked out their site answer this question:
Is there a story of hope that you would like to share with the community today?