The Beginning - A Vision
Photo by PK Mercado
In the summer of 2008, I had a vision from God and didn’t really know what it meant at the time. My vision was so real and vivid I just couldn't ignore it. In this dream, there were many rooms being built. Every night for about a week I had the same dream. I never experienced a dream like this before. In these dreams, there was a very large youth group center with an amazing facility and activities for youth. I could see a theater room, a game room, a workout room, music, and a café. There was even a recording studio and musical instruments for the youth to learn how to play. I could see this facility and all that it had to offer helping to keep youth off the streets and enable them to be built up with confidence and provide them with Godly tools enabling them to make the right choices and have a better future. I saw clearly, a Women’s group exposed to great teachings through the Word of God so these women would be filled with God’s wisdom, filled with God’s unconditional love and to build up their self esteem to become confident in the Lord. With this new confidence, they would build their homes with love, compassion and strength. My vision also included a food pantry, clothing pantry and a home goods pantry to provide for those less fortunate.
During the time of this vision, I was still learning about being a Christian and having a relationship with the Lord. Little did I know that He was preparing me for His calling to build His Kingdom of Heaven on Earth in the City of New Britain, CT. At the time, I was unemployed but the Lord clearly told me I was to work for Him, and I was to study the Word of God and so I did. God continued to work in me; by teaching me His ways, and by guiding me with His Wisdom.
In the year of 2010, God continued to speak to my heart and pressed upon me to "Pray, Prepare, Practice". I didn’t fully understand what he meant by it, but I continued to do what he told me to do - pray, prepare, and practice. One very important thing he kept telling me was to be obedient. He would press upon me to remain humble and kind, and to do everything with love. During this same year, each time I went to a specific church service, God would speak to my heart and tell me during each service that this is what I am to do; to preach the Word of God. I asked myself, How I’m I going to do this? I don’t have any money. Who’s going to listen to me? Where do I start? I don’t’ know what to do. I was asking other pastors and ministers for guidance but none of them seemed to give me any leads or answers. I was still uncertain, until God said to me one day, very clearly, " I will teach you, guide you and instruct you the way to go. I will be with you and I will not leave you."
He began to reveal the way, by teaching me, and guiding me to scriptures, His Word, scriptures I had never read. The following are some of the scriptures he lead me to:
Haggai 1:3 (NIV) Then the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai:
Haggai 1:4 (NIV) “Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?”
Haggai 1:5 (NIV) Now this is what the LORD Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways."
Haggai 1:6 (NIV)You have planted much, but harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.”
Haggai 1:7 (NIV) This is what the LORD Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways"
Haggai 1:8 (NIV) "Go up into the mountains and bring down timber and build my house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored,” says the LORD.
Haggai 1:9 (NIV) “You expected much, but see, it turned out to be little. What you brought home, I blew away. Why?” declares the LORD Almighty. “Because of my house, which remains a ruin, while each of you is busy with your own house."
Haggai 1:13 (NIV) Then Haggai, the LORD’s messenger, gave this message of the LORD to the people: “I am with you,” declares the LORD.
Haggai 2:4 (NIV) "Be strong, all you people of the land," declares the LORD, "and work. For I am with you," declares the LORD Almighty.
Isaiah 42:6 (NIV) “I, the LORD, have called you in righteousness; I will take hold ofyour hand. I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles,
Isaiah 42:7 (NIV) to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.
Isaiah 42:16 (NIV) I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.
Isaiah 55:3 (NIV) Give ear and come to me; listen, that you may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David.
Isaiah 55:8 (NIV) “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.
Isaiah 55:9 (NIV) “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."
Through these scriptures and many more, God has been teaching me, showing me, guiding me and instructing me in the way I should go through the Word, and through personal trials and tribulations. He continues to do so as I follow His ways and do His will. He has been counseling me in His truth and watching over me as He reveals to me His Will in my life and for the Light of Hope Ministries. Through this vision revealed to me and the will of God, The Light of Hope Ministires was born.
It is my hope and prayer that God continues to reveal HisTruth through the people and the works of the Light of Hope Ministries that God's will be done to Glorify him through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Michele M. Mercado-Ruiz
Founder, Light of Hope Ministries