To all Friends and Supporters of Open Gate Ministries:
Today, when we hear the name “Ebenezer,” immediately the character of Ebenezer Scrooge comes to mind, the miserly boss in Dicken’s Christmas Carol. Because of him, over the decades, “Ebenezer” has gained a negative connotation. However, the original word has a quite different meaning. In 1 Samuel 7:12: “Samuel took a stone and set it upright between Mizpeh and Shen. He named it Ebenezer, explaining, ‘The Lord has helped us to this point.’” (HCSB)
Open Gate Ministries is now in its 43rd year of following the Lord’s commandment to help others. There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that the Lord has been helping Open Gate all along, Open Gate’s perseverance decrees “Ebenezer”. There have been numerous financial challenges (“opportunities”) and miraculous recoveries over the decades, and we now start 2017 with a healthy financial position. Open Gate is debt-free and fully owns both of its two properties, the Shelter and the Thrift Shop.
But we are already faced with an opportunity for this new year. For many years, we have received a small grant from FEMA to help us provide Emergency Food and Shelter as needed. This year, the amount of the grant is not only reduced, but the timing of the grant is such that we will only receive half of it this year. This means that we are already expecting a shortfall of about $22,000 in our budget for this fiscal year.
While we do have a modest savings account for emergencies, we call upon all of our generous supporters to respond to the calling of the Lord by supporting Open Gate. At 511 North K Street we have raised our Ebenezer; Open Gate has come this far with God’s grace and help. Our wish for the new year is that we continue to work in His will so that our Ebenezer will stand as a symbol of His goodness for many years to come.
May the Lord Bless you abundantly
Ray Anderson, Executive Director