Monday, August 27, 2012

Others Before Me

An excerpt from Other Before Me
By Ryan Tyson, Volunteer, The Center

July-September 2012

Girls are not allowed outside without an adult male. Don’t sit near the windows, because they cannot stop a bullet. These were just a couple of our instructions given on the first day of my weeklong visit to The Center with my church youth group. This mission field in Stockton, California, is a safe haven for kids in the inner city.

The kids in Stockton have grown up in a society in which they are rarely shown options other than gangs, drugs, and violence. The kids at The Center have said “No” to all of that and have chosen to follow God. For them, this means a complete change in lifestyle. When I observed what a drastic change they had to go through, I realized that being a true disciple calls for me to change my whole persona as well.

Since the trip, I have been adjusting everything I do to focus on God. It is more than just following the rules; it means shifting my perspective. The biggest change is probably my selfishness. God calls us to be selfless, which I did not think I was. To this day, I still have to work very hard to put others’ needs before mine. This also means that I need to be more sympathetic and look at things from an objective view. From an outside perspective, these may seem like subtle changes, but from an inside perspective, the difference is enormous. This is not just a part of my life; it is my life.

PRAY: Is God calling you to make drastic changes in your life? Take time right now to pray that God will lead you to a change in perspective.

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