Finding New Life is one of our faith’s most treasured benefits. If you have a past, there’s nothing more cleansing than the opportunity to start again.

Portland, OR is home to a unique bread company that is expanding rapidly. Dedicated to organics and healthy ingredients, Dave’s Killer Breads were first sold at farmer’s markets and in neighborhood stores. The breads are finding a hungry audience and now sell more than 600,000 loaves a day in 25 different states.

But there’s a story of redemption rolled in the yeast.

Namesake Dave Dahl was invited to start the company by his brother Glen after spending 15 years in prison. Dave’s story accompanies every loaf of bread. “I went to prison four times. I was a knucklehead drug addict. I was an armed robber, a drug dealer, a burglar. I did … whatever.”

The Power of Second Chances

One out of three of the company’s employees have a criminal background. “We believe in giving second chances to people who screwed up but are ready to change,” said Dave Dahl. “We are dedicated to providing the tools to be successful.  We give training, support, camaraderie and life skills.”

The company believes that an entire culture can be changed there is “power of second chances.”

When I contemplate my New Life, I can’t help but think about the grace extended to me by others. I had faithful friends, loving family members, and a grandmother who never quit praying. Still, despite crossing the gulf into new life, the old life has a way of popping up at the most inopportune times. The deception, the selfishness, and the pride are just the tip of an ugly past – a past that sometimes shadows my future. Then I’m reminded that my sin is “cast as far as the east is from the west.” I’m loved and forgiven.  

Your story may not include prison, but it does include second chances. Maybe the world hasn’t been as generous to you as Dave’s Breads, but God is. As the father of the Prodigal, he rushes to you with a robe and a feast. “Welcome Home.”

How do you Find New Life?

What inspires you and motivates you find new life?  What kinds of things nudge, urge, or even push you into a deeper relationship. Have you been given a second chance? Have you found a new purpose? Have had another shot at a new beginning? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic.

Here are the details for our community link-up:

How to Share Your Story

Every other week, we offer a new link-up at The High Calling. This is an invitation for you to be a part of the conversations we’re hosting.

This week, consider how you Find New Life. Write your story on your blog sometime before Saturday, October 18, at midnight, and then share it with us using the link-up tool below.

We’ll be reading all of your stories, and we will choose a few of the linked posts to feature right here on our homepage the week of October 20.

Submission Guidelines

Make sure your story is 600 words or fewer. We really love good storytelling. Follow the theme as closely as possible, while still exercising your God-given creativity. Read past High Calling features to get a feel of our style and focus. Direct references to faith and Scripture are fine, but not required.

Publish your piece on your blog and submit your piece along with the URL on the link-up below by Saturday night, October 18, in order to be considered for a featured spot.

We’d love it if you’d also include a link to this post, so other writers and readers in the network can learn about our linkup.

Looking Ahead

Our next community linkup will begin Nov 10. We will be exploring the theme “Create Good.”  Check back then for more details.

David Rupert is a Community Editor for the High Calling.

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Find New Life

Feeling lost? God invites you to inhabit new life. Wherever you find yourself on the journey, God is always calling us to something even more. The Bible reassures us that God is doing a new thing (Isaiah 43:19), and yet we sometimes pass over the new thing in search of the next thing. But what if what God has for you is in the letting go of what you know and what you've already done? To find life, we must first lose it (Matthew 10:39). But what does that mean, really? Join us for this series, Find New Life. Together, let's find our footing. Let's embrace the new thing God has for each of us.

David Rupert was a writer and editor for The High Calling for many years. He still writes truth in community, culture, and the workplace at Red Letter Believers.
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