Two years ago, Summer 2007, I served in Monroe, Louisiana at the Louisiana Baptist Children’s Home (LBCH) through Collegiate Missions. That summer, God revealed just what He wanted me to do with my life: work with teenagers who simply need love. Love in all its forms, but primarily as a friend, a mentor, a counselor, a sister. Teenagers who feel that it is them against the world. Kids who need to know the love of my sweet, steadfast, and faithful Savior. Since that summer, every door that has opened in my life has been in someway leading to the ultimate goal of my passion for these kids. LBCH houses kids of all ages, but I felt heavily called to witness and to love on the girls at Mobley Cottage (the teenage girls cottage). From Day 1, Mobley Cottage was where I needed to be the most, the place where most of my ministering needed to happen. But I had no clue what all that held in store for me. To this day I still pray for those girls, my Mobley girls, and for Mr. Dale and Mrs. Harriet. They are the two most amazing people I think I have ever come to know (I could write an entire blog just about them). And the day that I left, sitting alone in the tiny Monroe Regional Airport, I knew that I wasn’t finished there. That God would bring me back one day…
The next Christmas I was able to visit, which brought back so much for me about this calling. From the day I arrived until the day I left, each girl was attached to my hip. There was something that brought out the silly girl in them when we hung out, the child that they should be instead of the hurt, broken, and fragile girl that they knew themselves to be. And early on during the summer I knew it was because I simply just loved them. Loved them for exactly who they were, not who I “expected” them to be. I allowed myself to be a willing vessel to be used for my Savior to love them. All it was was just love. I allowed love to be genuine and real, even when they didn’t want to be loved. I opened myself to let them see that through my refusal to give up on them and to love them regardless of what they had done in their pasts that God and His sweet Son love them just the same, and infinitely more. And with every visit this has only been reinforced.
Now it’s time for the visit for 2009. :) And Matthew is tagging along this time. I’ve had LBCH on my heart so heavily the past couple of weeks, but I really paid no mind to it. I just prayed every so often for everyone there. And then I got a message from one of the directors, the main one I was under in 2007, Mr. Frost, about needing to come visit the kids again soon, that I was still an important part of their lives. The message hit me literally like a ton of bricks. I knew I needed to go back. My heart since then has literally ached for the place. So August 10 – 13th, we’ll be in Monroe!! And I couldn’t be more excited!!!!! I haven’t been able to go a day without getting pumped about it (and hopefully I haven’t gotten on Matthew’s nerves too bad about it). I just can’t wait for him to see how amazing this place is and how beautifully amazing every single child is. And I’m looking forward to meeting all the new faces.
Please be in prayer for this place. Satan works hard against the staff, the cottage parents, and the children daily. Seriously hard. Heavy hard. Pray for grace and perseverance for the staff and parents and open hearts for the children. Love is needed greatly.
And check out the website if you have a chance.