Heb 12:1-3 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. NIV
The message we focused on in church recently began with these verses. Edward Romero, one of our Elders at the Light, discussed with us the pain, the sacrifice, and the joy of being a coach and also of being an athlete. We were reminded that we all have a Coach on the sidelines who wants to spur us on to become the very best we can be, or even better than we can be, as He makes up the difference. Jesus is there shouting, “Come on (your name) just a little bit further! You can do it!”
I think that the joy that was set before Jesus was knowing that by atoning for our sins, we would no longer have to be separated from Him, our God, our Coach who formed us in the womb, determined our DNA, and who thought of all the great joy we would bring to Him if we would only choose to fully discover and use the gifts and talents He gave us to fulfill our part in restoring His Kingdom on earth! Just as parents cheer their kids on in competitions, God is cheering us on in our life paths. Do you hear Him? Do you recognize His voice? If we are seeking to fulfill the destiny He has for us, then we do! Jesus said,
John 10:27 My sheep listen to my voice ; I know them, and they follow me.
Obeying Him, listening to him cheer us on, will fill us with a sense of His amazing love for us, and joy as we see Him at work in our lives.
This is our task with our girls at Casa and even with all of the kids in our scholarship program! Our goal is to instill a sense of God’s Love in their hearts, a sense that he is their coach, cheering them on, working with them, day by day through all of the issues of being a child or a teen, developing into an independent adult, working hard to demonstrate His love in their lives, working hard to develop their personal talents, working hard to make a God- difference in this world.
It is important for us all to keep in mind that we are in a race of perseverance, a race that requires conditioning, stamina, vision, and focus. The writer of Hebrews reminds us to consider all that Jesus went through, and yet He did it with joy, for us, for the kids we are seeking to help in Palomas, for our families. The next time you start getting discouraged, or feeling down, maybe like you have been beaten up by the world and you are just worn out, and you want to drop out of the race, remember our Lord! There He is, on the sidelines, cheering you on! Come on, you can do it! Sure it hurts, sure it is hard, sure it would be easier to just quit, but then remember, a crown of righteousness awaits those who get back up, give it one more effort, and seek to finish that race strong! Intimacy with Him is worth it all!
Let us pray that we can not only feel encouraged, but that we can also encourage others, and especially our kids in Palomas, the importance of perseverance in the Lord’s work, which brings the greatest joy and purpose one can have in life!
This month, we had a few changes at Casa: Yesenia and Victoria, who are both over 18, decided to go live in Torreon with our former Assistant Director, Ana Montoya! They both found work the first day they started looking! They will both likely be pretty much self-supporting now, as they work and continue with their schooling, with both of them hoping to attend college in the fall. It is so amazing when I think of how Ana had to go live there for a period of time as a result of her kidney transplant, and little did any of us know, God had additional plans for her while she stays there, to continue mentoring and helping Yesenia and Victoria. What a great, and unexpected blessing!
This month has been good at Casa, with the girls getting 2 weeks off and cleaning and repainting their rooms, and we saw them demonstrate such talent!
We feel that the girls have a renewed sense of purpose in school and are seeking to finish the school year strong! Please continue to keep us and them in your prayers!
During our monthly reunion, Pastor Roberto (Beto) preached to the parents of our students. He talked of the beginning of Moses’s success as leader. He reminded us that his success began with the teachings of his parents. He used Moses’ life as an example, to show them the great love Moses’ parents had for him, and how they did everything they could to ensure he become the man God wanted him to be.
Our prayer is that God will continue working on all the families that we see month after month, and that they let God guide them to become who He wants them to be. 1 Chronicles 23
In April, we started preparing for the new school year. All the students that were pre-selected for the program attended our monthly meeting to have their photo taken. Our current students also had their picture taken and received their Alas de Amor t-shirt for the year.