Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Meet 8 teenage heroes.

I'd like to introduce you to 8 of my heroes. I can't show you their pictures...and I don't even know their names....but there are 8 girls in IL who have stolen my heart, encouraged my soul and challenged me through their lives to live my life well.
**photo from Brave Girls Club....b/c I couldn't think of any braver girls than these!
These 8 girls are all growing up in the foster care system. They have known loss. They have experienced abuse and abandonment. They know pain. They know suffering. They know what it is to have very little to your name. They know what it is to feel forgotten. They are in a small group now. The official name of the group is R.E.A.D.Y. (Redeemed. Empowered. Anointed. Determined. Youth).  But these girls just call themselves "Redeemed", because you know what else they know? They know love. They know a God who adores them. They know healing.

What's REALLY incredible - is that they know that THEY have been chosen to also administer healing in this world. To be young women who will love others well. To be lovers of Jesus who pour that love out on others who have suffered.

A few months ago, these girls got together and bought a cow for 3 hurting women in Uganda. They had bake sales and worked and worked and worked to raise $200 for a cow. In March, I got this email from their beautiful small group leader, Chantel
"I have seen many changes in the girls since we've begun this journey. For the first time, they are looking past their own survival. For the first time they have been able to give, to open their tightly clenched fists that keep them holding onto moldy food, for the fear of having nothing to eat. I'm also seeing a decrease in their self-destructive behaviors. They are growing. They are healing. They finally understand they are not alone in this world.

Only God could use a cow to do that!"
**note:  This week, their mamas got their cow! I can't wait for pictures to show the girls.

These beautiful amazing souls were not done yet! They have been mowing lawns in the heat of the summer, working and working and working and have now raised the money for their mamas to go to the conference and to have a group loan. $250. All raised by a group of girls who have known loss and suffering and are choosing to sacrificially love their "sisters" halfway across the world so that they may know healing. I am overwhelmed.

Chantel sent me this a few nights ago:
"The girls have been very busy praying for their sisters, and doing yard work in very hot weather for elderly church members to raise money.

This has really been a wonderful opportunity for them to grow in compassion, to look beyond their own pain and loss to receive some healing and restoration. To see they are no longer victims, but strong young women of God who can make a difference. This ministry was the key to reaching their hearts!"

I don't know about you - but these girls are my heroes. Girls, I love you all and can't wait to meet your mamas in Uganda. I'll be getting video of us giving them their group loan and I can't wait to tell them all about you! You are so brave and strong and beautiful. You are amazing. I know Jesus must just beam with pride when He thinks about you, His precious daughters, serving His other precious daughters.

They have given me permission to share their story in hopes that the relationship between foster girls in Illinois and women in Uganda might encourage others to give and to get involved in changing the world and offering healing to the hurting world around us.  We have 6 more groups of mamas that need group loans. Would you like to take the "Redeemed Girls" challenge and support one of these groups? If so, click on the paypal link to give...and make sure to tell us that you are following the girls' lead so we can tell them!

PS: If you'd like to leave a comment on this blog....I bet Chantel will share it with them :) Tell the girls how beautiful and brave and lovely they are!

No comments:

Post a Comment