Partner Profile: Brent Christian

Brent Christian partners with UGM in a variety of ways: He serves on the Board of Directors. He uses his business, Tobler Marina, to raise awareness and donations through his annual “Summerize, Serve and Save” event, and he himself has donated 11 boats over the years.

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Partner Profile: The Beldens

Serving meals at a California rescue mission several years ago made a lasting impression on Jerry and Stephanie Belden. So much so that, when they moved to the Inland Northwest, they immediately decided to partner with Union Gospel Mission to feed and care for the poor and homeless in this area.

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Heart to Heart: The Heart has Eyes

Sometimes we are blind.


The problem (for most of us) isn’t with the function of our actual eyeballs, the cornea or the retina or the optical nerve. Even age isn’t the major problem. In fact, you might say our physical sight is working all too well. We see – and judge – by appearances. We notice whether someone is well dressed or a bit rumpled. We notice if a man’s gut hangs over his belt or a woman has put on a few pounds. We pay attention to tattoos and piercings, scraggly beards, whether someone is balding or gray, stooped over or walking with a lively step. We notice the cars people drive, whether their yards are well kept, the images they post on social media, and the letters behind their names.

No, the problem for most of us isn’t with the health of our eyeballs. The problem is with the health of our hearts and how that affects our sight.

The Gospels tell a lot of stories about blindness – both physical and spiritual – and often a story about one sheds light on the other. Take this story from Luke 18: Jesus was walking to Jericho, and as usual, a huge crowd had gathered around him. The group came upon a blind man sitting on the side of the road, and when the man heard that Jesus was near, he started shouting: “Jesus! Master, have mercy on me. Mercy, Son of David!”

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Homeless - Human

It’s easy to look at a homeless person and see only his or her homelessness – the weathered face, the cardboard sign, the worn clothes, the desperation. It’s easy to forget that, first and foremost, he or she is a human being, created in the image of God.

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