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A New Journey Begins

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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The Vision is growing

The Framework is being built

The Heart and Soul are ready

This truly will be a new Journey of Faith

Journey of Redemption – Healing (JORHEALING) is what I’m calling a movement, an inspiration. It’s a place where I will attempt to engagingly showcase the people I meet and the places I see along the way in my own recovery journey… with a twist…

YOU CAN ACTIVELY ENGAGE IN CHANGING LIVES

The Backstory

I have been struggling for years with chronic illnesses but have always bounced back, until this time. On August 10, 2018, I ended up in the Emergency Room with internal bleeding and exhaustion; the 18 hour days and 60-70 hour work weeks had caught up again. From there I spent nearly 2 months sleeping around the clock.

In the last month, I have been gaining strength but endurance is still tanked. It takes no more than a couple of hours of mental or physical activity to force me to completely disengage from everything, recovery can come fast or slow… nothing I do seems to affect it one way or the other.

The Inspiration

At one time my doctor had suggested I go camping, get out of the house and completely remove myself from all stressors… and I did. In October 2018 I set out to meet a friend for a couple days camping in his motorhome. Afterward, he went on his way but somehow I felt the need to stick around longer.

Long story short, I believe it was Divinely Appointed that I then traveled to several different campgrounds throughout California over the next 10 days. In nearly every location I met people with incredible stories. Some inspirational and filled with hope, others were heart-wrenching yet filled with faith and a selflessness I’ve never seen before.

It is that last group that pressed heavy on my heart, what could I possibly do to help? An out of work guy on disability who can’t do much more than “rest” 24×7.

What could I possibly contribute?

JORHEALING IS BORN

I believe what unfolded over the next few days was again Divinely Inspired. For some people, a simple cash bump could move mountains.

And I’ve seen what good-hearted people can do when they rally around a just cause.

To that end, I have been inspired to create this blog to highlight the people & places I meet along the way and offer a voice for those hurting and oftentimes helpless.

With that, I am determined and committed to personally sponsor the people and the causes who could be helped financially by setting up GoFundMe pages on their behalf and present prayer opportunities for those who believe in the power of prayer.

In addition to being the administrator of the campaigns, to the best of my ability, I will personally cover the 2.9% GFM fees so anyone who donates will be ensured 100% of all donations goes directly to the person, people or cause.

If by any miracle this movement proves to be of value to the people I meet and equally for the people who generously give of any amount, and this endeavor show signs of becoming sustainable, I will look into setting up a 501(c)(3) so all donations become eligible as a tax write-off.

What’s in it for me?

Nothing financially. This is truly my desire to find something I can do in my current limited capacity to make a difference in the lives of those I encounter.

In fact, it will cost me time, talent and money. But I’m confident the reward for potentially making a difference in even one life would be priceless beyond these personal sacrifices.

If you are interested in helping me get started on this endeavor, have suggestions or believe you could help in other ways please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.

And yes, I am a Christian. The point of this endeavor, however, is not to evangelize, it is simply to find new and creative ways to “love my neighbor…”

To gain a little more insight into who I am, the things I wrestle with and messages true to heart,  you can check out my other blogs @ One Man’s Journey of Redemption and Band of Brothers Devotional

Blessings,

George

Special Request: This is an interactive site. I ask that anyone who feels so moved to freely comment on any blog post listed. Whether leaving donations for someone or praying for their situation they will surely be encouraged to know they are being thought of and cared for from afar.  


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Where and When It All Began

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Limekiln State Part – Big Sur, California – October 2018

How blessed can one get? After leaving the New Cuyama Valley my car mysteriously chose to drive north up the 1 Freeway instead of heading south, which would be back home to Los Angeles.

Oh well, who was I to argue with that?

I knew I was taking a big risk, early Fall season on the California Coastline is a very difficult time to just show up to a coastal campground expecting them to have a site available… and this didn’t look like it was going to work out.

The entrance to Limekiln State Park was blocked off with a sign that said “Campground Full”

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As much as my heart sank in that moment, I didn’t just drive 3 hours further away from home to not at least see this all the way through.

So I drove down the steep driveway to the kiosk and when I pulled up to the window and asked if a spot was available the attendant let out some sort of chortle or snort… a snorttle I guess. He commented they are booked solid for the next 5 weeks or so.

He could likely see my immediate disappointment and I’m sure just to humor me, he looked at his clipboard and I literally saw the “shock and awe” come across his face.

Not only was there a spot open, but it was one of their nicest spots (#9) on the ocean side of the camp (as opposed to the redwood side, equally awesome!) right near the beach up against the river that flows through camp into the ocean.

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For those that know some of my story, it just so happens this was the exact spot I stayed in nearly 8 years ago when my life changed forever… the EXACT SAME SPOT, and it was the only spot available when none were supposed to be!

I don’t believe in coincidences much, Divine Appointments is how I choose to view stuff like this!

Needless to say, the next 18 hours was amazing with nature, sunset, sunrise and a host of other spectacular visual experiences.

Being situated under one of the several spectacular Highway 1 bridges, few people even realize that a campground exists underneath it. It is a place rich with history and wonderful hiking trails to a waterfall and the historic Limekilns.

For a much more detailed write-up, better pictures and camping info, check out the page dedicated to Limekiln on HIKESPEAK.COM 

This also was the first campground where the foundation of JORHEALING began to percolate.

This trip, much like the one nearly 8 years ago to this campground, will truly be cherished for a lifetime.

 

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Who Inspired It All

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Image from: http://ihpi.umich.edu/files/older-couple-prostate-cancerjpg this is not Joe and Rita

Meet Joe & Rita, the inspiration for this entire JORHEALING endeavor. Sadly I do not have their contact info so although their story below is 100% true, I have no way of contacting them if donations were made. I won’t make that mistake again!


I met Joe & Rita at Francis Beach Campground in Half Moon Bay, California.

An absolutely delightful couple who reached out to me first to comment on an (insane in our opinion) man who jumped into the ocean at sunset, swam what seemed like several hundred yards straight out in freezing cold water without a wetsuit, then swam north for another couple hundred yards. We all sat in amazement enjoying this amazing setting and feat of the human heart.

Over the next couple of days, we continued to run into each other and conversation came easy with them. I know I was privileged to hear only a few of their hardships in life, and what I heard was heart-wrenching.

For one, they lost their 17-year-old daughter tragically many years ago. Joe has never truly gotten over the loss of his angel girl and has for decades visited her gravesite every Saturday without fail.

Rita, formerly a nurse, was injured on the job by a flailing patient and is now out of work and disabled.

Joe, in his late 60’s, is working at the job he’s been at for over 20 years doing back-breaking labor up to 18 hours a day, 70 hours or more per week and sometimes going weeks without a day off.

This was the first vacation they have had in years, and it was delayed due to Rita’s health which wasn’t worth “wasting on vacation” as she put it. Gratefully she felt better to travel the week I was there.

What is truly heartbreaking about this story is that Joe can’t slow down because he is the sole income earner, and Rita can’t slow down because she is the sole caretaker for her ailing 82-year-old mother who has cancer and dementia who lives with them.

In addition, they regularly take homeless people into their home to give them a chance to get cleaned up and fed for a week or a month, whatever it takes before they head back out on the street.

This couple truly defines the word selfless, and there is no system, family or method in place to let them have even a moments rest from their outpouring of support to those around them at the expense of their own health and well-being.

On top of all that, Rita needs expensive medicine that is not covered by insurance and her mom needs expensive medical treatments, both of which they have to forgo many months because Joe’s backbreaking work only pays the basic household bills.

I know there are many in our country who seem to be the forgotten, they pour out their entire lives only to be left alone in the struggle in the twilight years.

WONDERING HOW YOU CAN HELP?

Visit their GoFundMe page at http://www.gofundme.com/jor-joe-and-rita

Special Note: The GoFundMe page is active to showcase how this works, however, no donations can be made as I, unfortunately, have no way of contacting them

God Bless,

George