T has been a part of the Dream Center for over three years. She started coming to the Friday Thrive bible study back in 2006. She was always living with different people, never with her mother. She'd come consistently for a while then drop off. I don't know of her ever being in school. She's been Homeless many times, prostituted by family, pregnant and living under the overpass with a drifter boyfriend, now she's living with a friend in a two bedroom house with 8 other people, sleeping on the couch.

And she's only 17 years old.

Im hard on T sometime. She pouts and I call her on it. She's rude to me when wanting something, I tell her to ask respectfully. When she had me drop her off at an abandoned house where people were smoking crack, because that was where her boyfriend was, I told her he wasn't a boyfriend of any worth if he was asking her to live on the streets, pregnant. And I told her not to call me again until she was ready to get off the street. I talk to her like she's my daughter and I tell her straight up.

T has come far recently, and she has far to go.

She faithfully comes to Sunday service and to help in the Cafe during the week. We got her in contact with the north Baton Rouge Crisis Pregnancy Center and she's on her way to getting the stuff she needs for a healthy start to her babies life. We are trying to convince her to go into a group home or an unwed mothers home, but T can be very stuborn.

Last week we were working in the Cafe and T was loading drinks into the fridge, I heard the Holy Spirit say "Encourage her" so I said "You do good T" she looked at me and her eyes widened with genuine surprise, her lips parted as if to say an excited "AH" then they came back together and became a huge smile. She then let out a perfect "T" yelp (I call it the "T" yelp because it's hers, it's kinda a "whoop" outburst, hard to explain) like she does during worship service on Sunday when she's dancing and lost in the moment of worship. The yelp is a good thing.

She told some new people that were in the Cafe that I was her momma, "That's my momma. Mrs. Carole she's my momma".  Then she giggled and smiled. I said "Yep, that's my T".

I can think of no greater compliment.

Later when I was taking her home I said,"Your gonna be a great Momma T" again she beamed and she said "I know!" then she yelped another perfect "T" yelp and through a giddy laugh said "First time ever!"

It was truly supernatural what a little bit of encouragement did to her countenance, what it did to her attitude, how it gladdened her heart. I realized in that moment that she never hears encouragement and that just a few words of it changed everything for her.  I had to laugh out loud at the wonder of it all. Her face in those moments would have made anyone smile.

T has a hard road in front of her. The road behind her has been all about pain and rejection. Now she has a baby coming in June and she's living on a couch. But I will encourage T, talk straight with her and correct her, do what I can to help her and I will dream with T because I know God has great plans for her life.


Sarah Head said…
mm i love this!

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