08 February 2011

Never Give Up...



Recently I got an email from a dear Christian friend asking for my help. The following is his request, and my response:


We've been bringing a bunch of young needy kids to our Church for several years now in the belief that that is what the Lord would have us do. But we're getting burnt out. The kids are difficult and starting to drift away. There is only a little positive response on the part of their parents. The kids can be a real distraction to others at Church and in worship and we're just not sure that it's worth the effort. Would you be willing to remind us that it is?


D.N.


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Here you go, D. I pray that God will use this to accomplish His purposes:


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Greetings to the folks of _______Church in the Name of our blessed Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. A few weeks ago, my husband and daughters had the privilege to visit with your congregation when you had the missions' luncheon for P. I shared a testimony with his parents that day that they thought might encourage you all.


My father left our home when I was eight years old in order to date a married woman. In the meantime, my mother - who was angry at God for the feath of her sister - had to raise me on her own. My dad sent no child support and she always worked 2 and sometimes 3 jobs. Needlss to say, I was a latchkey child. My mom had a bad track record with men and dated men who treated her poorly or who couldn't stay committed. We moved around alot. In fact, Over my 12 years of schooling, I went to no less than 10 different schools in 3 different states. Though my mom is a believer now, she was a quite a drinker during my childhood - often getting drunk to escape her own emotional pain.


Now, during all this time, God was working in my life. How? Well, it seems that every new place we moved, He would raise up some nice old lady, or a loving couple, or a friend and her family, or...well, SOMEONE who would invite me to church. My mom would not take me, but she figured it would be good for me, so she let me go. And each place we lived SOMEONE took me to church. I didn't go every week. And in some places I only got to go a time or two before we moved. But God always had SOMEONE there to take me. Many of those people also tried to reach out to my mom, but she wasn't ready. I'm sure they got discouraged trying to share Christ with us!


But they DID share Christ with us. Some of them just provided rides to services, others invited us to their homes and reached out in other ways. When I was in 7th grade all those seeds began to grow. I surrendered my life to Christ and started to live for Him. Not long after that, my mom also accepted Christ. We were baptised on the same day!


Today, we both love and serve Him wholeheartedly. We are involved in ministry and in evangelism.


How I wish I could go back and thank each and every one of those precious folks who took the time to take a bratty only child from a dysfunctional home and loving on her. But I can't. Truth is, I can't even remember most of those people with any real "memory", if you know what I mean. But God used them to bring me into His kingdom - even though they never actually saw the fruit. Even though we were unpredictable and unreliable. Even though I'm sure they got discouraged.


I think of Hebrews Chapter 11 where God praises the saints of old because they remained faithful, even when they didn't see the promised future.


Please don't give up on the children you have ministering to. Please be the SOMEONE in their lives that shares the seed of Christ's love. Don't just endure them, pray for them. Pray for their sad and confused parents. Love them. Even if it is only for a short time, God can and WILL use your efforts for His glory.


Thank you!


Groovy


PS. I hope you will all be able to listen to this song by Ray Boltz. It is from my heart to those who reached out to me when I was young...









10 comments:

The Johnson Punkin Patch~ said...

Oh Sherry! Your timing on this couldn't me any more perfect than now! Thank you for sending this out for me to see.. God's timing really is perfect :)

Dawn said...

This is such a wonderful story! I know it's discouraging to bring "bus kids" or kids that don't know how to act. I've seen it so many times. The first time I heard that song I bawled. Such a great song.

Thanks so much for sharing this - I had no idea! I love when I hear stories from church leaders who had just such an upbringing and people who intervened along the way.

Michelle-ozark crafter said...

Great post!

MaineFarmGirl said...

Thanks Sherry for sharing this! For me, this was an encouragement as a Christian looking back on their "less than perfect" life, not focusing on the junk but seeing where God was in it all. He was there working through others, guiding, protecting and bringing you to this present day as a sold-out woman of faith! Love it!!

Devon Redman said...

Wonderful message/story!!! Thanks so much for sharing and the encouragement that is needed right now :-)

Susan said...

I was blessed to read this, Groovy. We never know who's lives we may be touching but we do know for whom it is we do it, our Lord and Savior. I'm sure those who wrote and were discouraged got just the word from you they needed and in the future will be making mention of YOU being that one being there when they needed you.
((hugs))

Susan said...

Groovy,

As you can see I read this a little while ago and commented on it. As I've been sitting here I just kept thinking about what you wrote and this verse keeps coming to my mind: A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. Proverbs 25:11 KJV

The writh word at the right time is like a custom-made piece of jewelry. Proverbs 25:11 The Message

Your word is surely fitly spoken. God bless you!!!

Bear said...

Groovy;
I don't know God personally,
only by reputation,
by feeling your words touch me,
I'm blessed by association.

groovyoldlady said...

Oh Bear, Bear, Bear...You CAN know Him. He loves you! Email me if you want to talk about Him!

groovyoldlady (at) roadrunner (dot) com

Bear said...

Thank you Groovy,

I appreciate your faith... not just in Him, but in me.