There is a kid in the youth group who’s always just known as the
trouble maker”. I wasn’t particularly bothered by him because I know how to handle rebellious kids (I used to be one of them). As the year went on, I realized that, the more I interacted with him, the more I saw myself in the kid. He was really just struggling to accept himself; all he needed was for someone to believe in him.
A few Wednesdays ago, he shared with us some private stuff about his life that we had no idea about; he struggles a lot with depression and aggression, and a slew of other things that a 6th grader should not be struggling with.
I couldn’t sleep for days after hearing that because I hurt so deeply for him. For the next couple of weeks, I couldn’t find him in church or at youth group.
I finally saw him in Church last Sunday. The moment I saw him, I knew that something had gone wrong; he looked like he hadn’t slept in days. I instinctively tackled him with my obnoxious hugs and I ended up sitting with him for the rest of the service—something just told me he needed it.
Today is his birthday, so last night, I got a ride to the mall and got him a birthday present. They are earbuds because I noticed on Sunday that his old ones were just about shot. I wrote him an encouraging card that talked about Ephesians 6:10-18 and challenged him to accept love offered to him by others, When I gave those to him today, he just looked at me and said, “you just know me.” I thought that was a strange response, but didn’t think much about it.
Later that night, the youth group watched a documentary of a Christian comedian who decided to do comedy shows at places like HIV clinics, homeless shelters, and juvenile detention centers. During our discussion session, we were asked the questions: how can we extend that love to others or how have others extended that love to us?
The kid raised his hand and said this:
I’ve never really had close connections with anyone. All my friends just stab me in the back. No one had ever really been there for me, you know? I tried to hang myself last week and ended up in the psychiatric ward. The day after I got out, I went to the early service at church, and I saw Celia and Mike (the youth director). The way they looked at me; the way their eyes were filled with care for me… I’ve never felt that before and I just felt my whole body fill with warmth. I guess God really has a way of putting people in your life when you need it the most.
I couldn’t stay to hear the rest of it because I was not doing a good job of holding myself together. I knew God did it; He worked through me, a wretched sinner, to shower grace and truth on this kid… and what’s even more amazing is that the kid didn’t just see two people being nice to him… he saw God working in his life.
I can’t even begin to describe how in awe I am right now by God’s deep love for His children. Thank you.@1 week ago with 9 notes
"What positions have you tried?"
to which the wife responded, ”Both of them.”
I almost died.@2 weeks ago with 7 notes
Whenever someone asks me my opinion about gay people, or people who support abortion, or people who picket funerals, or people of other religions, or transgender people, or overly religious people, I usually say, “You mean what do I think about people? Well I’m a people too, and we’re all pretty screwed up. And I think we all need Jesus.”
God loves people. We’re all invited. End of story.
(via brianli)@2 weeks ago with 188 notes