The vision for Rising Above Ministries was birthed through Jeff and Becky Davidson’s experiences raising their son, Jon Alex, with profound special needs. In the fall of 2005, Rising Above launched a monthly worship service for families of individuals with special needs in Cookeville, Tennessee. Soon the local ministry was providing support groups, respite nights, Connect Groups, and regular family outings and activities as well. The following year Rising Above held its first Easter Eggstravaganza for the special needs community in a local park. Hundreds turned out from all over Middle Tennessee. With 16 egg hunts all modified for various special needs, games, activities, and entertainment for all ages, the event demonstrated the overwhelming need to reach out to those with special needs. As the ministry grew, more and more ambitious projects followed. Other signature events include the annual Heroes’ Ball, special needs Vacation Bible Schools, special-needs proms, family nights, Christmas celebrations, and fall festivals.
In 2010 God gave Jeff a clear vision and calling to expand Rising Above into a national ministry. Since then, Rising Above Connect Groups have been established across the South and into other parts of the country. In addition, the ministry now hosts several annual national retreats, conferences, and events such as By The Brook and An Evening at Brookside for moms raising children with special needs, the SOAR men’s weekend experiences for dads, and the Two-Gether marriage retreats and seminars for couples raising a child with special needs. Rising Above also offers For Jonathan’s Sake workshops and training for churches on developing and implementing special needs ministries. Helping churches design their ministries for those with special needs or build a program from the ground up are passions of the ministry. Rising Above helps churches cast vision, design and plan special needs ministries, raise up and train teams, and then equips them with the tools and resources needed to implement the ministry. Rising Above also has developed a small group curriculum specifically for groups of special-needs parents.
Rising Above believes every life is wonderfully made, and that God created everyone with a plan and a purpose to glorify God.”