From: Ryan Allen, National Field Director, Youth for Christ USA

Relationships… like pulling weeds.

Getting our hands dirtyHave you ever spent a day pulling weeds and thinking you were done only to find another patch ready to take over your garden?  Did you miss them or did they just grow that fast?  I’ve found that the only way to keep them out is to spend ten minutes a day pulling weeds, and eventually I  begin to see less and less.  But if I take my eyes off the garden for long, it will look like I never pulled a single weed.

Last week I met Tom in the hotel lobby while eating our free breakfast.  You know, the one with fake eggs and microwave bacon.  Just minutes into the conversation Tom asked, “What do you do for a living?”  I like that question because I hope it leads to, “How are you funded?”  So I excitedly told Tom that I work for Youth for Christ.  “Oh,” he said, “you guys aren’t afraid to get your hands dirty.”  At this point I’m not sure if he was making fun of us or if this was some kind of a compliment.  I simply asked if he had heard of Youth for Christ.

Tom began to tell me Robert’s story.  Robert, Tom’s brother, had been locked up as a teenager fifteen years ago and had attempted suicide at least three times. However, some volunteers from Youth for Christ in Houston, Texas went to the institution every week, and Robert’s life was eventually transformed by the Gospel.  Tom told me that his own family had pretty much given up on his brother but today Robert is involved in his church and doing well.  So yes, he had heard of Youth for Christ!

In Luke 19:1-10 Jesus became the guest of a sinner.  He was ridiculed for His decision, but a life was forever changed.

Relationships are often difficult. They require us to pull weeds daily and get our hands dirty. But if we stick with it, we will witness the beauty of transformation.