Threads of Hope

Date: December 20, 2023
Host: Jim Schneider
​Guest: Alex Kuhlow
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As we look at poverty around the world, some individuals are forced into some very desperate situations just to provide the basic needs of life.  Sometimes prostitution appears to be the only way out.  With that comes exploitation and sex-trafficking.

Fortunately, someone’s engaged in a ministry designed to break that cycle.  That person is Alex Kuhlow.  Alex is the founder & executive director for Threads of Hope, Inc.

While growing up, becoming a missionary was simply not a part of Alex’s vocational plans.  As the son of a plumber, Alex grew up in the affluence of Neenah, Wisconsin, where he eventually became a machinist.  Working long hours, he reasoned that he wanted to retire and live a comfortable life.

One day as he was reading about the rich young ruler, the idea of selling everything, giving it to the poor and following Christ hit Alex hard.  He wondered what his response would be if Christ was giving these instructions to him personally.

As Alex noted, he wasn’t a pilot, a church planter or a Bible translator.  He was just a blue-collar machinist so he didn’t think he had anything to offer the mission field.

But God had other plans…

One day a missionary came to to his church who happened to be a journeyman plumber.  He was sharing with youth that whatever skills and abilities you have, the Lord can use them on the mission field.  After the presentation, Alex asked the missionary what the greatest obstacle was in getting to the mission field.  The missionary told him it was financial debt.  That was the very week Alex and his wife had become financially debt free.  There went that excuse!  

Eventually Alex and his wife found themselves as dorm parents at an academy in the Philippines.  That led to a beach encounter where kids were selling friendship bracelets that would allow them to provide for the basic needs for their family.  One girl in particular stood out and Alex and his wife would renew their friendship with this girl each year.  This led to them discovering how some of these girls disappear via bogus marriages, debt schemes and prostitution.

Alex had an idea.  He decided to buy about $100 dollars worth of bracelets (Enough income for one month for this girl’s family).  He wasn’t sure he’d ever see her, the money or the bracelets again, but much to his surprise, the next time he set foot on that beach, he was presented with 1,200 bracelets!          

Alex took these bracelets, made of colorful, cotton embroidery thread, and brought them to the U.S. that summer.  They were sold at a Bible camp in northern Wisconsin and netted them $1,000.  Remember, this was ten times the amount Alex originally invested!

But wait…the story becomes even more miraculous and worldwide in scope as it lead to the formation of the ministry/non-profit organization known as Threads of Hope.  

Get the remaining details by reviewing this amazing edition of Crosstalk.      

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