As we begin 2020 at Sanctuary Inn we believe God is asking us to pay attention to the “story” He is writing. The story of His work in our lives and in the lives of the missionaries that come to Sanctuary Inn. God is always telling a story!
Here is a bit of our story…
We love to tell the story of Sanctuary Inn because it is an awesome story! Awesome because when we talk about it, we are in awe of what God did to bring this ministry into being.
Our story begins with the dissolution of two ministries. For eleven years Steven and Joann Price had been on staff with the WorldView Center in Portland, Oregon.
WorldView provided housing for international students who were attending Western Seminary. In 2014 the decision was made that the building which housed WorldView would have to be sold. The pending sale of that building opened the door for Steve and Joann to dream about the next thing that God might have for them.
Gathering a group of friends and other ministry partners (the Dream Team) they began praying and dreaming about the future. It seemed almost immediately that God put it on the hearts of the team that missionary care was the direction in which we were being led. We were thrilled with the idea but the question was, “Where would such a ministry be located?”
At almost the same time another ministry (that we did not know) was also dealing with the need to close their doors. Their question was, “What will we do with the buildings and land that we own?”
As the Dream Team met and talked we imagined a place for missionaries that was outside of the city, that had trees and open spaces, some existing buildings, and maybe even a river or some other water. As a team we believed that such a setting in and of itself would have therapeutic value for the missionary guests that we imagined coming. In addition to the natural space we wanted to create spaces in the buildings where the missionaries would come and be encouraged; places of beauty, creativity and a feeling of home.
I’ll bet you can guess what happened next!
A friend who had lived at the WorldView Center and who had worked for Youth Guidance Association (the ministry we did not know) connected us and we began to talk. The property that Youth Guidance was vacating was located within an hour of Portland, in the woods, it had existing buildings and the western boundary is the Salmon River! As a team we were thrilled with the potential!
Now the question was, “How would all of this happen? How would God take this dream He had put in our hearts and make it a reality?”
God began to build a relationship between Sanctuary Inn and Youth Guidance Association (YGA). The desire of both organizations was that we would clearly hear from God as to what He wanted. There is something incredible about having two organizations who love Jesus praying through each step along the way.
Something that stood out about YGA throughout the process was their level of generosity and stewardship. The way they cared for the property over the years, the relationships with the boys and with the staff, and their ongoing prayers for the property to this day. As we continued to talk with YGA they agreed to sell the property to Sanctuary Inn. They had the property appraised and then they came to us with the sale price of $750,000 — about half of its appraised value! This was another awe-inspiring event in the process of obtaining the property.
The price was amazing, but how would all of this happen? Sanctuary Inn didn’t have a fat bank account — in fact we had very little money at all. At this point WorldView (when the property sale was complete) gifted Sanctuary Inn with $250,000 as a down payment on the Youth Guidance property in Welches. Another awesome act of an awesome God!
The gift of $250,000 left a balance of $500,000. Together, YGA and WorldView (now Culture Bound), drafted a Note where they each agreed to hold a balance of $250,000. Now, when we make our monthly payments (a need met by your faithful donations), we don’t pay a bank, we are helping to support two ministries that are doing the work of God in local and international ministry. Already we know that Youth Guidance has given away close to $200,000 towards supporting organizations who are reaching at-risk children, youth, and their families.
One of the gifts that YGA has given Sanctuary Inn was a financial gift which paid for the painting of the Lodge. Another awesome thing!
Now you know why we love to tell the awesome story of our awesome God! Two ministries at a crossroad helped give birth to a third ministry that God is using to bless missionary families serving around the world — all the while helping two other ministries continue to have an impact for the kingdom of God.