January 2016

Where Does a Woman Go When...

God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Ps 46:1

she’s lost all hope?
“I was at the end of my rope, hope and my life. I didn’t even know if I wanted
to live, but I knew my life would never be the same because I came here. God
made it clear that this was where I belonged for now. Like invasive cancer surgery, God has removed pride, anger, bitterness, fear and rebellion from me.
To say the least, the scales have fallen off my eyes and I see just how needy
and desperate I am. I praise the Lord that I’m walking into my identity as His
child. I will be a woman who no longer pretends to have it all together, because my life is held together by Him.” ~Laura

New Year, New Beginning
Dear Friends and Family,
“These things I have spoken to you, that
my joy may be in you, and that your joy
may be full.” John 15:11
“Joy to the world, the Lord has come!”

… she’s so depressed she cannot get out of bed?
“I was tired of living, tired of trying, seeking to be done with life, crawling in
despair; I had Major Depression. At the Refuge, I was prodded, taught,
encouraged and confronted—all in love and in the truth of God’s Word. I
discovered what causes my depression, how to keep it away, and that I am not
a depressed person. I now rejoice in the truth that God has set me free from
the despair of depression. I am His new creation and no longer want to hide
or disappear. I want to live in Christ and have Him live through me. Only
God, through His amazing Grace, can bring about such a change. I praise His Holy Name and
thank Him for bringing me to the Refuge!” ~Leann

… she thinks her life is over?
“After the tragic death of my husband to suicide, I tried to take my own life. I spent 33

days in the hospital recovering from surgery and then waiting to come to the Refuge.
While at the Refuge, the Lord dealt with me about forgiveness and the need to deal with
the unforgiveness in my heart. I have also learned how to be broken before God and live
in the daily awareness of His presence. He has done a great work in my life and I praise
Him for it. For the first time in my life I no longer identify myself as a depressed person.
As a result of this whole incident, my family has united and is behind me 100%.”~Karen

… she’s numb and confused?
“I came to the Refuge numb, confused and needing clarity. After studying the
teachings on forgiveness, brokenness and self-worth and having the counseling, I have a new understanding of my identity in Christ. Even if I had these
teachings at home it would have taken months to get where I am now. I am
totally amazed how God orchestrated my “story” to end up at the Women’s
Refuge and I am eternally grateful.” ~Karen

“Therefore, we who have fled to him for REFUGE can have
great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.” Hebrews 6:18

The Women’s Refuge prayed for you, our
friends and family, to have a joyful Christmas and a blessed New Year. Residents
went home for the holidays and came
back with joyful accounts of relationships
being healed and faith being renewed in
the word of truth.
The Refuge’s vision has always been for
those who come to receive God’s truth in
His Word. We offer His peace in the
middle of a storm and His joy in the
middle of suffering. Our counseling is
strictly based on the Bible’s truths and the
practice of cognitive behavioral therapy.
We are strikingly different from secular
counseling, because we believe that mankind cannot be truly joyful or peaceful
without God. A person who is dependent
on things going well might experience
happiness and calmness, but he or she
will not have true joy or everlasting
peace. This makes us distinct, and it is
what brings women from all over the
world to the Women’s Refuge in Vero
Beach. The staff and board certainly don’t
have it all together, but we know who
does.
Joy is contagious if it is real. Please
consider
the
testimonies
in
these
newsletters as evidences of what true joy
looks like. Granted, people who come for
the residential program or community

counseling or the support groups are not
completely done with their growing as believers, and they may go through difficult
times of suffering in the future. I go
through suffering as well, and will until I
die. But, God’s Word never lies: Jesus
said, “I have said these things to you, that
in Me you may have peace. In the world,
you will have tribulation. But take heart,
for I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Pray for us in 2016 as we continue to seek
the Lord for the challenges ahead. We
trust that our budget for 2015 will still be
met, even as we make out one for 2016.
Thank you for sending your offerings to
the Refuge to help us keep this unique
program going for His wounded children,
for the glory of God!
Serving and loving Him with you all,
Donna (and my wonderful husband, Ted)

We Thank

Since 1997, the Women’s Refuge has been
providing a place where women from all
walks of life and situations can go to for
REFUGE and to find SANCTUARY as they seek
hope and healing through Christ. This unique
ministry exists because the Lord has commissioned it and will only continue as He
provides. We trust Him to work in the hearts
of people like you to invest their time,
resources, and prayers into the Refuge.

Women will achieve healing in a loving, safe
Christian environment that goes further to discover, explore and magnify the life God desires
for them.
Our graduates establish a firm foundation in
who they are in Jesus Christ. They make
dramatic improvements in self-worth, Bible
knowledge, and positive attitudes with a
balanced healthy lifestyle through receiving
and giving forgiveness. Not only do they learn
their true identities in Christ, they learn how to
have a godly marriage through our family
counseling. Furthermore, the women return
home to their families, churches, and
communities as leaders and many decide to
enter Christian ministry. The Refuge model
has a proven track record that has consistently
impacted and positively changed the lives of
nearly five hundred women, plus their families.

Women who participate in our residential
program start and end their day with prayer
and God’s Word. A typical day consists of a
combination of individual counseling, Bible
study, Bible based curriculum, support
groups, exercise and volunteering. The program helps develop their faith through learning and community which culminates in
maturity and growth

Sarah’s 3 Months

“It will help us fight for joy if we realize why Paul
calls it a good fight. First, it is a good fight because
the enemy of our joy is evil. The enemy is unbelief,
and the satanic forces behind it, and the sins that
come from it. When you set yourself to combat the
forces that try to make you delight in yourself or
your accomplishments or your possessions more
than in God, you oppose a very evil enemy. Therefore it is a good fight.”

“I am 30 years
old and a resident
of Vero Beach
since I was 3
years old. I got
married in 2012,
and we had a baby boy in 2013.
Since my husband
and I didn’t have
any jobs, we let
my older sister
adopt him when
he was about a
year old. It was so tough on me being a mother
under those circumstances, and we wanted him
to be taken care of better than we could do.
However, afterwards, I got very depressed,
isolated myself and quit eating for 7 months.
After losing 55 pounds, my family put me into
an eating disorder facility for one month.
Leaving there, I had started eating again, but I
wanted to get closer to God and to find some
structure for my life. My husband had left me
and I was still depressed and floundering. I
came to the Refuge in September, 2015, and
God is slowly changing me by showing me
discipline and even how to cook and clean! I’m
learning to express my anger, to forgive myself
and to have hope for the future. The Refuge is
a great place and it’s impacting my life in many
ways. For now, I’m taking one day at a time to
see where God leads me.” ~ Sarah

“We can draw no deadlines for God. He hastens or
He delays as he sees fit. And his timing is allloving toward his children. On, that we might learn
to be patient in the hour of darkness. I don't mean
that we make peace with darkness. We fight for
joy. But we fight as those who are saved by grace
and held by Christ. We say...that our night will
soon- in God's good timing- turn to day.”
― John Piper, When I Don't Desire God: How to Fight
for Joy

Many people come from backgrounds of
abuse, family dysfunction, depression, anxiety, grief, illness, trauma, unhealthy relationships, and more. At the Refuge women regain balance and order in their life through
active discussion of the Bible and sharing
faith, strength and hope with others.

“We who have fled to
him for REFUGE can
have great confidence
as we hold to the
HOPE that lies before
us.” Hebrews 6:18

Fighting for Joy

Because of

Calling all Runners and Walkers! Mark your calendars for January 23,
2016 and plan to participate in the second Run/Walk for the Women’s
Refuge of Vero Beach.

Help to make this annual fundraiser a race to remember and plan to
join us as we kick-off the new year pushing for the finish line. The
race begins at 7:30 a.m. at South Beach. Medals and gifts will be
awarded in all age groups. Racers can pre-register for $25.00 until
January 22nd -or register onsite race day for $30.00. Colorful race
shirts are guaranteed to the first 100 registered! All winners will receive an award …and prizes!