If you started pulling back the all the layers in Helena, Arkansas there's no telling what you'd find.
The first layer would probably look like scarcity. Most people don't go beyond that layer; it is the layer most news stations report on; only one layer.
The next layer might look like the sleepiness of a city thinking fondly of riverboat glory years.
And the next would be rich Civil War history and blues music.
The next layer would look like small town charm.
The next the small businesses working to revitalize the town.
The layers go on and on... and the whole town begs the question, "What is Helena?"
It is a city on the hunt for identity.
In October 2016, I was praying about the year to come
and I heard, "Arkansas."
Helena was the only town that I knew of in Arkansas and when I visited the town I was impacted
by the heart of God over a town so loved and cherished
and in need of an identity of love.
I stayed there once a month for six months and drove the streets, photographing the people
who lived there; searching for Helena.
Through many adventures, I met mechanics and retirees, preachers and drug addicts
children and blue collar workers, businesspeople and artists...
but mostly storytellers.
In six months,
I was only able to peel back a few layers but I know that the core is pure gold
because its the people of Helena that make it beautiful.
Their resilience, humor and stories reflect the One who made them well.
I invite you to come find Helena