Learning and Growing

The ladies in our program go through 3 phases. In Phase 1, we have a structured schedule for our ladies that includes one-on-one counseling, classes, personal Bible study, and serving opportunities. Phase 1 is a time to get to the heart of a lady’s struggle and learn what the Word of God says about that. In Phase 2, a lady is still living in the Vision of Hope home, but is able to follow her own schedule, and often has a job or other responsibilities outside of the home, while still receiving one-on-one counseling regularly. Phase 3 is a time to solidly apply what has been learned. A lady in Phase 3 moves out of the home, and still receives weekly counseling with her counselor through our program.

When a lady moves to a new phase or has been in our program for some time, we encourage them to remember what they have learned so far in our program. One of our residents recently received an assignment from her counselor to write down what she has learned so far during her time as a Phase 1 resident. We would like to share this with you today, so you can rejoice with us because of how God works in our lives!

Here is what she said she has learned:

  • My relationship with God, praying to God continually and seeking Him
  • Self-control
  • Loving those around me and not picking who to love
  • Fellowshipping, getting to know others and asking others questions about them
  • Finding comfort in God
  • Having a teachable spirit in receiving correction
  • Not focusing all of my attention on the outer man
  • Taking my thoughts captive and giving them to God
  • Being a listener
  • Finding joy
  • Putting others first and compassion for others
  • Handling conflict, bitterness, gossip and sarcasm
  • Discipline in memorizing Scripture
  • Contentment
  • Pleasing God over pleasing people
  • Being patient with others
  • Asking forgiveness
  • Having a hunger to learn more about God
  • Having thankfulness
  • Working hard in various cleaning assignments and being a good steward of caring for my bedroom
  • Not holding grudges against others
  • Being a good steward of my free time and using that time to love others or grow in my relationship with God
  • I am not to be ruled by my emotions, and how to handle emotions biblically
  • Applying what I learn to myself

She would tell you that God has used a variety of ways to teach her these things: studying God’s Word as part of our program and also on her own, counseling assignments, classes at VOH taught by staff and volunteers, interactions with interns, and classes and sermons at Faith Church. We are thankful for the rich community of believers in and around VOH that God uses to teach, correct, encourage and train our residents to grow in their knowledge and love of our Savior.

As our residents progress into phase 2 and then phase 3, a huge emphasis in counseling is application. We desire all of our residents to be like the wise man in Matthew 7:24: “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who build his house on the rock.” (emphasis added) We desire for our residents to not only hear the Word of the Lord, but to also put it into practice, embracing wise living for God’s glory.

Jennifer Cantu
Jennifer Cantu works as a counselor and Shift Supervisor at Vision of Hope. She received her biblical counseling certification from ACBC in 2014. In addition to working at VOH, Jennifer counsels women through Faith Church’s counseling ministry. She is very thankful for ministry opportunities to help, teach and encourage women with God's Word.