Honestly, it is difficult not to tear up as I tell this story. I told a story a few years ago on one of our blog posts about a time when we carried the cross in a lower income African American community. We were getting the cross out of our truck and a few African American girls happened to be sitting out on their front porch. They literally thought that we were the Klan. They had their phones ready to call the police because they thought that we were going to light it on fire! This girl (I’ll call her L) in the picture openly confesses that she did not like white people. She has had a difficult life and she truly thought we were crazy for being in this community. When we approached them, she was pretty mouthy I will say towards us:). We just spent time loving on them. We began to to pray over her friend and her friend started crying. L was a little shocked and wondering what the heck was going on with her friend! Then we felt like God showed us something about L that was very personal. I cannot share what we shared but it was deep and personal and only God could have revealed it to us. We shared it with her and immediately she started to tear up. It was right on. We just started speaking His love over her and that God wanted to heal her wounds. Her attitude changed in this moment. It was a miracle.
For over two years the girls on our team built a relationship with her as she started to attempt to straighten out her life. It wasn’t pretty, but it never is, even in my life:). Then something happened. That word we spoke over her about what happened in her life was coming full circle. At a funeral she was in a tremendously difficult place, but God wanted her to forgive and she did! Since then her life has turned around.
Talk about full circle! Look at this girl and the beautiful smile on her face carrying the same cross we had carried a few years back. Now she is carrying it with the same people because she wants to share about how her life was changed to the same community, her community. We didn’t ask her to carry it. She demanded that she carry it! She was so proud and so brave. You could tell she was nervous but she did it anyway. We were so proud of her.
We carried it to one of her old friends apartment and knocked on the window. These two friends were up to no good a few years back. Her friend opened the door and saw her standing with the cross and in shock and in a joking way slammed the door shut:). It was almost like, “you can’t bring that cross in here…that cross is not worthy here for someone like me.” But the friend opened back her door and said, “I want that cross inside my house.” That was a first! It was difficult getting it in. We all went in and L just led the way sharing her story and ministering to this girl. Her friend was so moved and told us that she felt like God was telling her to turn her life around that week. As we listened to this girl’s struggles in life, we shared scripture pertaining to her life and simply asked her what she thought that scripture meant to her. It was a beautiful answer. And then we asked how she could apply that scripture to her life that week. She was so excited to put it into practice and was so excited to meet next week and share with us how it went. This girl was so excited and moved! We actually as a group just started praying and thanking God right there. We met for two hours as friends just getting around the Bible and letting it affect our lives.
What a day! What happened this day is what we want to be about and what we want to encourage others in. God changing a life that in-turn changes another life by simply equipping people to hear from God for themselves through the Bible, applying it to their life, and sharing it with others.