One of the gifts that I have and exercise a lot that comes really naturally is encouragement. I have this yearning to build people up. Maybe that’s why I have invested so much time and effort with teens in the residential facility I volunteer at.
We use the Bible to teach lessons to help the students learn self-worth and encourage personal growth. Some of the lessons are on forgiveness, trust, hope, honor, telling the truth. My last devotion was on acceptance.
I try very hard, through encouragement, to help them scale new heights in personal trust and confidence, self-worth, and strengthening their ability to have and develop solid relationships with significant and important people in their lives; parents, friends, teachers, and others.
Here are some of the things that have happened with a few of the students.
- A couple of Catholic students returned to their faith and trust in God, exploring that faith through Bible reading, study and prayer.
- Helped one student with a Jewish and Catholic background explore what the Old Testament says about homosexuality and her struggle with it.
- Several students came to believe in God. Both weren’t sure and even had family telling them there was no God.
- Several students learning to trust others.
- Several are exploring faith in God. They already believed, but hadn’t had trust and faith…yet.
- And I heard today that one of the mentor’s was communicating with the rest of the staff at the facility that a couple of the boys have been encouraged just in the past week or so.
- There are a lot more stories I could share.
I am not the only one leading them Biblically and spiritually. We have a few others who invest in the students too and they are helping affect positive spiritual change in many of the students lives.
Please don’t think I am blowing my horn, trying to praise myself. I am explaining something that is very real that I get to be a part of. But is also important.
It’s important because these teens need the encouragement. It could be the difference between success and failure in their lives. I fully intend to help them succeed with their life. If I have the opportunity to invest the gift God has given me in other people, I will.