"Sometimes people are struggling with life & carrying a smile always trying to be strong, so be kind to the people you meet, you never know what is going on in their life. A kind word may be all it takes to help them thru another day"
written by Johnny Cook
Based in Hanceville, Alabama, Cook Ministries is a 501c3 nonprofit Christian street ministry who believes in a W.A.R. (War Against Rebellion) Recovery mindset.
Rebellion is defined as opposition against authority. We find ourselves in a position of doing what “we” want to do, rather than what God has created us to do and that is when we find ourselves in contradiction of our own selves as well as contradiction against the Word of God.
Recovery is defined as a return to normal state of mind, health and strength.
When these two are put together in a Godly way, we find that we can recover in spite of any of our actions which have been brought about by our own rebellious nature.
So therefore, addictions of any type, including substance (drug and alcohol) abuse, depression, suicidal ideations, mental and physical abuse and slavery can be overcome through W.A.R. Recovery.
In order to change the world there must first be a group of people who understand what the focus is, and that’s Kingdom principles. Jesus came to serve people, love people, preach to people, heal people and deliver people. Our focus is on people, not on ministry. Take care of people and the ministry takes care of itself.
Through everything I've experienced in life, including working in the funeral industry for over 20 years, nothing ever prepared me for the death of my brother on November 8, 2015. I only made it through because of my relationship with Christ and the strong grounded Christians who surrounded me. I cried out to God that I had to find something good to come from his death and that is how Cook Ministries was birthed.
According to Newton's third law, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. I believe that to be true in the spirit realm as well. I believe that for everything bad that happens, we must look for the good. Sometimes it's easy to find, sometimes we have to look extra hard, wait on God and even have doubts. In "finding the good" that is actually part of what built this ministry. There are details and events of our ministry that were created based upon the opposite reaction.
Through all the hurt, the grief and loss, I've finally learned to be thankful. I'm thankful that God has placed so many wonderful friends in my life, as well as my brother's life. The largest portion of our volunteers are personal friends and that always makes every event that much more special.
The name Cook Ministries has absolutely nothing to do with me, but everything to do with my brother and his life. It's all about helping others in memory of my brother, Johnny.
The Bible tells us in Luke 15 the parable of the Lost Sheep, my prayer is that this ministry can reach out to just that one person who's feeling lost and overwhelmed - just one! I pray and believe there will be many more, but the most important thing is that we treat everyone as if they are the only one.
Perhaps it's still my personal grief of what I couldn't do for my brother, I can try to do for someone else but most importantly I'm learning to allow God to use me, no matter what the circumstances are that surround me, God use me to make a difference, use me in the midst of my own faults and failures, use me and I'll go.
Thank you God for my brother's unconditional and protective love I had for 43 years - may my next 43 years be used to serve you, to show that same love my brother showed me and to be a reflection of the true love of Christ!
restore = to reconcile, put back together, to be healed
love = to be kind, patient, to honor
1) To bring something special back, to choose a new beginning
2) To always give second chances
3) To replace rejection with acceptance through deliverance
4) To find our value within
5) To always love God, ourselves & others
Karen is Founder and President, she serves our team as Chaplain and Project Leader.
Since 2010 she has served primarily in the Christian Street Ministry atmosphere, filling leadership roles.
She has spent time serving the homeless, the trafficked and addicts, from being inside recovery centers to being on the streets.
She has taught Recovery inside the jail system, as well as in public settings, and even served as Chaplain at the local police department along side one of her mentors, who helped guide her into finding the path she's on today with suicide prevention.
She is also a piano player and singer who loves to share her testimony as well as sing for God.
After five years of street ministry, her brother died by suicide and it was then, that she found herself struggling with the path she was to be on, and it was through that grief and pain, the vision for this ministry began, and is named for her brother, Johnny Cook.
Donny serves as Vice President and Pastor of our team.
He was born into a family with 3 older brothers and an abusive alcoholic father, and then fatherless at age 5 with a single mother trying to raise 4 boys.
He was accepted into the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch at age 9 where he first experienced the scripture of God and church every Sunday, he then returned home at the age of 13 to live with his mom.
At the age of 15 he tried to make a deal with God to save his mom from cancer, that he would be that good and faithful servant if God would save her, but one month after Donny received salvation, his mother died October 1984.
After her death he got mad at God and went his own way and had an auto accident in August of 1989 flipping the vehicle across 2 lanes of highway and into the ditch. He remembers opening his eyes and seeing the road upside down and saying God please help me, and God was still faithful. He actually argued with the state trooper that he was even in the vehicle because he had no injuries.
In 1997 he found himself having marriage trouble that brought him to his knees crying out unto the Lord, he had a true. “Prodigal Son Experience” and came back to the Lord in 1998 by the only other love of his life, his wife.
He surrendered to the calling of the Lord in 2002, became a Deacon at a local Church and has tried to obey with all of his life.
The majority of his life people, children and adults both, have told him that the Lord has a calling on his life, which reminds him of Romans 11:29 “for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable."
Hope serves on our team as treasurer/secretary, as well as Director of Hope's Anchor , our addiction recovery ministry.
Our namesake, Johnny Cook is her uncle, she proudly serves not only the suicide awareness advocacy but in all aspects of our ministry.
She holds a degree in Criminal Justice, has an amazing testimony of how she overcame addiction and is very passionate about helping others through restoration and addiction recovery
Eddie serves on our Advisory Board, he is a former District Judge and holds a Master's Degree in Christian Apologetics from the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.
He is President of Faith Fortress Ministries, organized in training apologetics ministry, their mission field expanded into supporting and establishing an orphanage in Northeast India to the communities of the Naga people.
Heath serves on our Advisory Board and oversees rescues and street ministry.
He is the President of Know Name Ministries and Elim.
Heath has 11 years experience of working anti-trafficking and addiction deliverance, as well as 11 years of street outreach and rescue experience, and also two years of pastoral care at a shelter.
Kevin is a cousin to our namesake, Johnny Cook.
Kevin serves on our team as Grant Coordinator, with 42 years in the Construction Industry, serving in all capacities from Laborer, Journeyman, to Manager and Business Owner.
Kevin has experienced and witness many of life's Challenges and stumbling blocks. Kevin has served in Churches, Municipal Community Development , Planning & Zoning, Local and State Educational Committees . Founder, Grant writer, and former Director of HIPPY Baldwin County. Kevin has a strong passion to see individuals overcome Challenges and stumbling Blocks in Life and develop to strong assets to their communities through Jesus Christ.
Miranda serves on our Intercessory Prayer Team.
She has experienced first hand God's miraculous healing power from a sickness that doctor's could not explain or treat, it was then through her physical healing that she realized the importance of prayer for others and her desire to pray for others deepened.
Tracey serves on our Intercessory Prayer Team.
Tracey's son was in the hospital with an extreme allergic reaction and it was during this time that she met an intercessor and prophetess who ministered with her and that began a sixteen year training program growing up in the supernatural of the kingdom of Jesus Christ, she learned to pray, fast and seek the Lord Jesus Christ with all her heart.
Tracey believes we are the kingdom children of the kingdom of God and we are to do greater things, so let's begin to do the greater things for our Heavenly Father.
Korey serves on our team as a Suicide Prevention Advocate and Motivational Speaker. He is president of Suicide Prevention & God's Helpers, a Chaplain and a Certified Clinical Christian Counselor. He is a suicide survivor and has a heart to help others.
Howard is a Pastor and Licensed Counselor and Owner/Director of The Delta Center. He serves our team in many roles, primarily as counselor helping those in need.
Candina serves on our team as Executive Assistant and Craft Designer.She grew up quilting at a young age with her grandmothers & great grandmother. Her Papaw was the first to teach her about Christ, and her values came from her mother & Papaw. She was an assistant Sunday School teacher at the age of 16 at the church she grew up in, and established her walk closer with God after the death of her mother in 2008. She is a member of Daystar Church and has volunteered with food ministries through the years as well as working with homeless ministries.She was a medical secretary for 20+ years and even grew up in a medical family and has always had the desire to help and serve others. Her hobbies include quilting, sewing, painting, woodwork, photography only to name a few and the majority of our crafts that you see in our ministry came from her talents.We are so thankful for her heart to serve others and that she desires to use her talents that she knows God has blessed her with, to be able to bless others.
Jennifer serves on our team as Director of Standing in the Gap. This program is designed specifically for women who can lean on other women for comfort and strength. Jennifer has a passion for praying for other women, she believes that any obedient believer, any righteous person, any spiritually strong believer can carry the weight of those who are struggling; that when you are spiritually weak you’re highly vulnerable, so she encourages us to get with someone who is spiritually strong and lean on their strength. She also believes the power of prayer restores blessings, joy, and brings refreshment to the parched, dry, weary, exhausted, weak believer who is struggling for a touch from Heaven.James 5:13-18
We have many volunteers who help on a regular basis and some periodically, but no matter how often they are with us, they are family, we love & appreciate them and couldn't do all that we do without each one of them.
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn. To console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified. And they shall rebuild the old ruins, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations.