Tonight, I talked at a High Point Bible Chapel in Daveport, about the race Jim and I have been running in for the last 15 years. I started off with how, it feels like a marathon more than a race, but I like to look at it as a relay because in a relay you can hand the baton off. I know we have handed several baton's off to Jesus in this race, such as patience, perseverance, endurance, discouragement, faith and trust. I didn't follow my paper I had typed out at all, but I hope I got the point out that this is a faith ministry and if it wasn't for Jesus running along side of us, I think I would have quit this race along time ago. It is only by the grace of God that we continue on, some days and weeks are harder than others. Right now, we are dealing a lot with the boys just coming back from a 13 day Christmas break being at home. One boy decided to come back with an I don't care attitude that had a pretty good attitude before going home. Another boy Jim wiped his consequence board of almost 500 hours clean before he went home and told him that he was giving him a new start when he came back just like Jesus does when he forgives us and wipes all our sins away. He came back with a really good attitude but then his first week back to school we were right back to not turning in his work. Another boy decided that he wasn't going to go to wrestling practice the whole time he was home, after being told by us several times that he would go to all his practices while at home. In order to teach how serious we are Jim pulled him out of wrestling. I just pulled him in the office, as I was typing this to ask him what he has learned from this. He said,"Not to test Jim." Then he told me that coach ask him if he was going to go out again next year and he said yes and the coach told him he was getting better. He has been grabbing different boys and taking them on the wrestling mat here to practice. It is hard to seem like we always have to be the mean one, but after hearing one of the boys talk after I talked to the people at the church, I realized that is what we have to do to get through to these young men. I was crying while listening to a very mature young man, talking about his life in front of a group of people, telling his testimony of the changed life that he has because of this ministry. This young man was a very angry little boy when he came to the ranch almost 3 years ago, he has developed into a respectable young man, because God has used Jim and I as the tools to turn a hardened heart into a open and loving heart. Deuteronomy 8:5-6 "Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the LORD your God disciplines you. Observe the commands of the LORD your God, walking in his ways and revering him." Lord, help Jim and I to continue on in this race, and discipline these boys as our own sons, and help us to observe your commands, and walk in your ways and revere you, so we may be the example in their lives that they can look up to. In Jesus Name, Amen
We are also are going through some rough times with our personal family, please pray for us to be able to hand all the batons over to Jesus right now, as we continue on in this race.
Specific prayer requests are:
- Cassie, our daughter, is back in the hospital after having the baby with some kind of infection, not sure what, she has been there since Friday 11th and is looking like she will be there another 2 days for sure.
- Jim is not feeling well again, just finished another antibiotic, and coughing bad again, going to allergist on Thursday.
- Dylan, Cassie's 19 month old son, ear infection and croupy cough (he wants his mommy)
- Our friends, with the loss of their daughter, strength
- A close friend of mine, giving up on her marriage, and no longer wants my friendship.
Thank you all for your prayers, and helping us run this race, especially, when the road is rough and rocky.
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