Lavond and Renee Reynolds want to help others gain victory over their challenges through Head of the Giant Ministry Inc.
The North Augusta couple founded the ministry in 2011 and in April, they were provided with 27 acres of land off Windsor Spring Road in Augusta for the ministry’s use. In September, they opened a men’s shelter and March 12, they opened a shelter for women and their children.
The couple came up with the name of the ministry based on the story of David and Goliath in I Samuel 17. It reflected exactly what the couple wants to achieve through the ministry, Renee said.
“When David showed his kingsmen and his family and the nation of Israel the head of the giant (Goliath), they were encouraged in God. They were encouraged that God was still in the business of giving them victory over their enemy,” she said. “So many people that are in this situation of homelessness have all these giants that are standing on the hilltop like Goliath. These giants are shouting down to them: ‘You will never have money to do what you need to do.’ ‘Your finances are in a mess.’ ‘You’re never going to be able to give up these drugs.’ ‘You’re never going to be able to put that bottle down.’ ‘You’re never going to be able to have victory in these areas of your life.’”
With the help and support of partnerships with area agencies, churches and outreach organizations, the ministry provides services such as shelter, food, clothing and life skills classes, helping homeless people obtain benefits and connect with resources they need, and helping them get job training.
They also share their faith with those they serve to help them defeat the “giants” in their lives through Christian counseling, she said.
“With God, we want to show them that they can have victory over those giants. Not only can they defeat those giants, they can also do what David did and take the heads of those giants as a trophy to cause their enemy to flee but also encourage their family and show them that if I got victory over this giant, he can give you victory over your giant.”
Lavond has previously directed and volunteered at homeless shelters. He has also experienced homelessness, which has made him a strong advocate for helping others.
“I have been in the worst of situations where I was literally homeless, and I’ve been at the top of situations where I’ve been at the top of my career field,” he said. “I believe that God has veered my path to clearly assign that this is what I am to do in this lifetime. The men who come through the shelter, they can’t pull one over on me. I recognize a lot of things by having seen it, but I’m also compassionate enough to know that everything is not going to be defeated with one single blow. Victory can be won and will be won but it’s going to be a continuous fight sometimes, and I want to help those people through that fight. That’s what we do through our ministry.”
Renee has experience through working with the homeless and doing volunteer work at shelters, helping her husband, working in children’s ministries and running outreach activities for women.
“It’s a real blessing,” she said of working in the ministry. “It’s definitely not easy, but it’s fulfilling work when you know that someone had no place to go and literally had nothing, and you’re able to help them.”