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Director’s Note – April 2024

“And all these things are from God who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and who has given us the ministry of reconciliation. In other words, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting people’s trespasses against them, and he has given us the message of reconciliation. Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making his plea through us. We plead with you on Christ’s behalf, ‘Be reconciled to God!'” (2 Corinthians 5:18-20 NET)

Our mission at Love INC is to mobilize local churches to transform lives and communities In the Name of Christ. Our goal, the reason why we have that mission, is poverty alleviation. Our work is rooted in helping people grow out of a cycle of poverty to a place where they see their self-worth and understand that they have gifts, talents, and the ability to succeed in life. We know all people have worth because our Creator, God the Father, has given each person a unique purpose for their life. We find minimal comfort in providing temporary relief for someone stuck in a cycle of poverty. Giving someone a handout only offers temporary relief and keeps them stuck in their cycle of need, which is why we help people through the lens of the Redemptive Compassion® philosophy.

The philosophy of Redemptive Compassion® is based on many principles from a book called When Helping HurtsIn the book, the authors express, “Poverty alleviation is the ministry of reconciliation: moving people closer to God by living in a right relationship with God, with self, with others and with the rest of creation. (When Helping Hurts p74)”

Our ministry walks alongside our neighbors in need and helps them understand their value and know they have salvation through Jesus Christ. The authors continue to say, “Rather, the goal is to restore people to a full expression of humanness, to being what God created us all to be, people who glorify God by living in, right relationship with God, with self, with others and with the rest of creation. One of the many manifestations of these relationships being reconciled is material poverty alleviation. (When Helping Hurts p74)”

To truly understand the ministry of reconciliation that Paul refers to in his letter to the Corinthians, we must understand what reconciliation means. Merriam-Webster defines the action of reconciling as “to restore to friendship or harmony. To settle, to resolve.” (Wednesday, April 17, 2024, )

This means reconciliation is the act of putting things back together, to bring balance. For something to be reconciled, something must be out of balance. As Christians, we know that our relationship with God became broken. We also know that Jesus’ death and resurrection restored this broken relationship. We are all broken and need the grace of Jesus.  

Most people either don’t admit it or dislike speaking about how they may play a part in their broken relationships. It is difficult to recognize when we hurt people with our actions. This principle is also true for people stuck in generational poverty. One of the harsh realities of people stuck in this cycle of poverty is they do not have strong relationships with their family, friends, spouse, children, education systems, faith, jobs, or any other type of relationship.

This reality is why we partner with our local church partners to offer our Fresh Start Program. Through this program, one of our goals is to help people learn how to have better relationships. We firmly believe that to restore our relationships with others, we must have a relationship with Jesus. Jesus is a part of all of our classes. It is difficult for us to have strong relationships with others if we don’t think Jesus wants a relationship with us. Being a Christian, or becoming a Christian, is not a requirement to participate in Fresh Start, but Jesus is there. His Word is present in the curriculum. He is among the people who greet, serve meals, lead/co-lead classes, and mentor one-on-one. Reconciling relationships with Jesus is what we are about. We desire to model Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 5:20, “Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making his plea through us. We plead with you on Christ’s behalf, ‘Be reconciled to God!'” (2 Corinthians 5:20 NET)

Have you experienced this reconciliation with God in your life? Are you passionate about your church community? Does the Love INC ministry excite you? Then, please consider becoming involved and using the God-given skills, talents, and gifts that are unique to you.

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We understand that the philosophy of Redemptive Compassion® may be new to you. We welcome you to learn more by attending our six-week group study I will lead during our Fresh Start Program starting May 6. We will watch a video in each session, followed by a group discussion. A small fee of $10 is required to cover the cost of the book.

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I conclude by asking everyone who reads this to pray for this ministry. Specific things you can pray for are for people to come to know Jesus through our work, the staff/volunteers who walk closely with our clients, and the wisdom of the board, myself, and the staff who lead this ministry.

A Note From Our Director

Jim Holmlund Executive Director, Love INC Heartland

A Note From Our Executive Director

Wash and make yourselves clean. Take your evil deeds out of my sight; stop doing wrong. Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:16-17 NIV

Every day, I receive a daily Bible verse emailed to me from BibleGateway. This verse was sent to me the morning I was preparing to write to all of you, our supporters of Love In the Name of Christ Heartland.

These are the words Isaiah wrote as he received a vision concerning Judah and Jerusalem during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah. The vision is a call from our Lord for his people to change their ways. Since the fall of Adam and Eve, our nature as people has been to look inward and not upward.

Verse 16 spoke to me about our work at Love INC Heartland.

Every day, I talk to the oppressed, the fatherless, the widowed, the divorced, the homeless, the confused, the hurting, and, most part, the material poor of the world. We often talk about the abandonment the people we work with feel in their lives. They feel abandoned by family, friends, and God. The people I speak to live in our communities. They are people who live amongst us. In most cases, you might never know who they are, but they are people you come across daily as you move about your community. In 2023, Love INC Heartland has grown in our capacity to serve those very same people.

As I read these two verses, looking through the lens of how we serve our neighbors in need, I am encouraged.

Redemptive Compassion® is the philosophy we use as we serve people who are struggling. This philosophy touches on two types of compassion necessary when serving the material poor. The first is charity compassion; the other is development compassion. In simple terms, charity compassion is a handout, and developmental compassion is a hand-up. Please don’t get me wrong–there is a place and a need for charity. However, charity compassion often becomes more about what we do than helping those receiving the charity. Sometimes, charity compassion to the material poor becomes a crutch that is more self-serving than it is a help for those who receive the charity. Charity compassion never really changes the status quo for the fatherless, the widowed, the divorced, etc., for anyone stuck in a cycle of generational poverty.

We often struggle to balance charity and developmental compassion at Love INC Heartland. We do our best to focus on developmental compassion. We use charity compassion to open the door to developing a relationship with our neighbors in need. We focus on working with people who have a desire to grow. They want to use the charity they receive to get to a place where they no longer need to rely on handouts. Most of that development comes through our neighbors in need attending our Fresh Start Program. In 2023, we saw our Fresh Start Program take a step forward. Here are some stats from Fresh Start this past year.

In closing, Isaiah is not just addressing Judah and the rest of Israel. He is speaking to all of God’s people. We, God’s people, are Israel.

In our broken nature, we fall into the same traps people have succumbed to since the fall of man into sin. We focus on us. It is our nature. I call on you to reflect upon ways you can be a part of developmental compassion in someone’s life. I know developmental compassion is difficult. It can get messy and consume one of our most precious resources: time. It takes a relationship with that person. Charity compassion is appealing to us because, in most cases, it requires very little on our behalf. Ask God to help you see where you can meet them where they are and help them become who God has called them to be. Yes, this speaks to more than just the material needs of people. It is about the whole person. We will continue to be about the entire person at Love INC Heartland.

In the coming weeks, we will send out our Annual Report. Our Annual Meeting is scheduled for February 20, 2024, at Delano United Methodist Church at 6:30pm. Thank you to one of our Abundant Church Partners for hosting this meeting, please mark your calendars to attend.

Thank you for being so supportive, whether financially, in volunteering, or through prayer; it has blessed us in 2023. May God continue to bless you as you answer the call to serve God’s people in 2024.

In Christ,

Jim Holmlund
Executive Director
Love INC Heartland

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You can make hope and transformation possible for our neighbors in need by becoming involved through financial giving, volunteering at Fresh Start, volunteering in our Connection Center, praying, and more.


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More Than A Thrift Store

Jim Holmlund Executive Director, Love INC Heartland

More Than A Thrift Store

Written By Jim Holmlund

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 NIV

I have been at Love In the Name of Christ for over two years. When I first arrived here, I sensed we had a big, bright light to share with the rest of the world. We had a story to tell, and people wanted to hear it. A story that if people heard, they would rally to our mission. However, circumstances of life and a pandemic put a cover over that light. The work still went on, but the message began to fade.

The passage above comes from Jesus’ famous Sermon on the Mount. I bet that was a happy time for Him. His ministry was blossoming, and He had all these people there who wanted to be fed some solid spiritual food. The old system of sacrifices and penance to earn forgiveness did not change people’s hearts. The acts of self-justification were filled with selfishness and arrogance and were empty of truth and relationship.

Love INC Heartland - More Than A Thrift Store

Then Jesus tells his people, “You are the light of the world.” He tells them to stand up and be seen. Let the world see your light and take off the lampshade so the world can see your deeds and glorify our Father in heaven. I like to think that we are a reflection of Jesus’ light, and at Love INC Heartland we share that light.

Will you help us continue to share the Light of Jesus? Donate any amount today.

At Love In the Name of Christ we are telling our story. I often hear… “Oh, you are the Thrift Store People”… That is when I smile and say, “Oh, we are much more than a thrift store!”

At Love In the Name of Christ, we change lives.

People come to us in a financial crisis and leave us with the truth of Jesus. We connect our neighbors in need with the gifts of God’s church. Sometimes, that is in the form of meeting material needs, such as diapers for their baby, bedding, clothing, car repair, or personal care items. We provide material goods to soften the crisis until we can build relationships with them and join them in their struggle.

We can only speak the truth of Jesus to people if we are willing to build relationships with them.

Love INC Heartland - More Than A Thrift Store

We need your help growing this ministry to build relationships with the neighbors we help. Consider giving any amount of $25, $50, $175, $550, or more today.

You see, this ministry is about relationships with people. Relationships take time to build. When you support Love INC with your time, talents, and financial resources, you create more opportunities for us to connect and build relationships with people in difficult financial situations.

Jesus stood on the side of that mountain, giving the world something they had never encountered before. He laid the foundation for His grace, love, and desire to be close to his people. He shared radical ideas like loving your enemy, turning the other cheek, stopping worrying, and judging others. He invites us to ask, seek, and knock, and the Father will provide all we need.

At Love In the Name of Christ, we help alleviate poverty in a way at which the current social climate would scoff. We not only share material goods with the financially marginalized…We invest in them as people. We are bold enough to ask them the radical question….” What do you have?”

The God of the universe doesn’t make junk, and all people have gifts and talents to offer. We are brave enough to tell those in financial need, “We want to help you see and use your gifts and talents!!!”

Will you support us while we let Jesus work His transformational change in people? Donate any amount today.

Love INC Heartland - More Than A Thrift Store

It is hard for people to see change in their lives when they do not fully understand their value. That is Jesus’ message to us:  I love you enough to tell you forgiving yourself and forgiving others is key in your life. I love you enough to die on the cross and take your sins on my shoulders. I love you enough to say, “I forgive you.” I love you enough to tell you that you have value. This was Jesus’ message to us in that sermon, His ministry, and His Resurrection. I love the resurrection power!!

Our mission is really that simple. We tell people they are loved and that they have value. We remind them Jesus knows their value. We walk beside them until that relationship can be restored. We help people move from darkness to the light. 

These are the good deeds we strive for at Love In the Name of Christ. These are the things I want to put on the lampstand and let our light shine to the world. These are the things that show who Jesus is to the world.

We need your financial support! Give any amount of $25, $50, $175, $550, or more today.

Love In the Name of Christ Heartland needs $30,000 to balance our budget in 2023. When you support Love In the Name of Christ, you support the mission field in your community. We are often the only Jesus with whom people come into contact. People in need are willing to ask, and we are eager to share.

I encourage you to help the ministry of Love INC Heartland to stay financially strong. Our work is vital to helping people make transformational change in our communities. Help us help people make the type of change only the Resurrected Lord of the Universe can make.

In Christ,

Jim Holmlund
Executive Director – Love INC Heartland
763-972-6547 |

P.S. Year-end is an important time for our ministry. There are so many people we can serve with your help. Please consider a generous donation of $25, $50, $100, $250, or more by December 31, 2023. Donations can be made online at or by mailing a check to:

Love INC Heartland
PO Box 143
Delano, MN 55328