February 2012 Newsletter
February is known as the love month. On February 14th many will be sending flowers, candy or a card to someone they hold special in their heart. However, for many there is no card, candy or flowers; but I have good news for them. God holds us all special in His heart. It doesn't matter who you are, where you are from, or where you have been. God's love for you is beyond your comprehension. I am sharing Edgar's testimony with you this month because he is a good example of someone who has been blessed with a father's love.
It is Possible.....I grew up for the first 15 years of my life in Russia, with parents who were alcoholics, so most of my teenage life I spent in the orphanage. Being in the orphanage was not a great experience. I ended up running across town to find work for myself. I made a lot of friends who paid me money and fed me great home cooked food. I was really happy when I went back to the orphanage because I was not hungry.
My little sister was in a different orphanage. Then, she got adopted by an American family. They wanted a better life for her. When I found out she was going to the United States I was happy for her. I knew in my heart she would be better off there than where I was, because I could not provide for her. As her big brother that was really hard on me. By now our birth dad had died in a fire and no one could find our mother.
My younger brother and I were in the same orphanage. I remember having thoughts of how it would be someday. One day, the same American family that adopted my sister decided to adopt my brother and me. I was 15 years old then. I was thinking about the future. How could I have hope for anything in my life? I was wrong. The judge asked if I wanted to go. I said yes. I was okay with my brother, sister, and me being adopted. I was okay with their calling us their children, providing for us and loving us with all their heart. I knew it was real, but I did not know how it was humanly impossible. They showed us God's love, and to this day, they say it is Him.
When I left Russia I wanted to leave all my bad habits there, but I didn't. As soon as I got used to being here, I started doing some of the old things and some worse things. I had jobs, which I loved, but I got bored with them. I started showing up late and stopped caring. I was too busy looking forward to getting drunk and high. After a while my reputation at work and at home was really bad. Unfortunately, I did not care at all.
One day I got arrested. I thought to myself, "I can't do anything. It all leads to destruction and heartache." I realized I needed help. I decided to come to Teen Challenge. At Teen Challenge, I was able to be healed by God spiritually, physically and emotionally. Before Teen Challenge, there was a raging battle inside my mind. God calmed the storms in my life. Now, I know the true meaning of peace and joy. These are attributes that can only come from God. God is the leader of my life. Without Him, none of this is possible. I give God all the glory and praise for saving me and giving me a fresh start on life's journey. All things are possible with God
Will you help us with a gift to share the love of Father God with men like Edgar? They need to know it is possible to be loved and accepted. All things are possible with God!
Dr. Bob Harman