We’re excited to introduce you to De’Leathia Hightower, our new Joy House Community Manager, who describes her calling to share “life lived together” with our residents as they recover from addictions and abuse. De’Leathia grew up in Detroit, with an older brother and a host of cousins. She attended two seminaries, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in North Carolina and our own Denver Seminary. She loves writing poetry, dancing, singing, reading, and crocheting. When she’s not spending time with our Joy House families, you might find her in the kitchen, making a batch of her grandma’s delicious peach cobbler.
What brought you to Providence Network?
During the pandemic, I began to think about what God was truly calling me to do, and while I enjoyed my job as an IT Security Administrator, I knew I was not where God wanted me. So, in 2021, I left my job and took a year-long sabbatical for prayer and seeking the Lord about the next phase of my life. Toward the end of my sabbatical, I found the position of Community Live-in Manager at Joy House on the Denver Seminary website. I was unfamiliar with Providence Network and the work that they were doing in Denver, but the more I read, the more I felt drawn to the role at Joy House.
The model of life lived together with those we minister to in a two-year-long program resonated with my desire to walk with others as they learn to walk in their God-given purpose.
What prepared you for Joy House?
My educational background includes master’s degrees in Divinity as well as Christian Formation and Soul Care, which has given me a strong biblical foundation, while my 20 years of administration, management, and computer skills prepared me for the practical work. However, I believe that it is the years of journeying alongside women and young adults, assisting with spiritual and practical knowledge for their personal, professional, educational, and spiritual maturity is what truly prepared me for the transformational work of Joy House. We are all about the business of helping our residents not only escape traumatic and debilitating circumstances but also work toward personal transformation, financial stability, and spiritual maturity.
How do you feel after a couple of months in your role?
Even though I did not come into this role with rose-colored glasses on, I do not think I was really prepared to hear the traumatic stories, brokenness, and pain of the women and children that we serve. My heart has had some moments of deep heaviness for what I have heard and seen. Yet there have already been so many opportunities to rejoice in seeing the transformations of the women and children. Being able to create a home that allows our residents to feel safe and secure warms my heart and encourages me that I am right where God wants me to be.
What else are you learning?
I am learning that this work is not about me. It is not about my skills, education, or many years of ministry, but it is about what God wants to do through me for the women and children He brings to Joy House.
The foundation of my job is to stay connected to God so that He can use me in the lives of our residents. This means putting into practice the things I learned and now teach about Soul Care, because if I am not healthy, physically, mentally, and spiritually, then I am of no real value to the work being done.
What are your hopes for the Joy House women?
I hope that the women of Joy House will find the freedom in the Lord that will allow them to dream past their circumstances. That they will be able to dream past the lies that have dominated their past. The lies that said they are nothing more than where they came from or the mistakes that they have made. I hope that after two years with us, that the women and children will know the Lord, be empowered to embrace the truth about who they really are, and that this will allow them to live transformed lives physically, mentally, and spiritually.
How can we pray for you?
Please pray that I will maintain a humble heart. That I will be filled and refilled with the Lord’s love, hope, truth, and Spirit. Please pray that the staff at Joy House will continue to grow in what the Lord wants from us. That we will be willing vessels used by Him doing the work He is calling us to do here at Joy House. I also ask you to be in prayer that the Lord will draw the women and children He is wanting to work with to Joy House and that, when they get here, they will experience His presence.
We love De’Leathia!
Our whole Providence Network team loves De’Leathia, and we are so grateful God led her to share life lived together with us. You can help De’Leathia and our Joy House team make a generational impact in the lives of our residents and their children by giving today. Thank you for partnering with us!