This weeks blog post is from our missionary in Costa Rica, Amy Speake.

God has really been doing great things in our Alturas ministry!

One of our kids, Bryan, has been a challenge from the beginning! He has been an extremely loud, hyperactive jokester who has bothered his fellow classmates incessantly. His mother was notified multiple times that he needed to change his attitude because we had tried just about everything to try to help him change. I felt his actions impeded the progress we would achieve with the other students if he continued in the program.

One day, I was praying for Bryan and I said, “God, help me be able to reach him because I am ready to give up.” The Lord placed on my heart during our Alturas breakfast to ask him what he wanted to be. He answered: “A policeman.” I said “why?” And he said “to help people.” It was at this point that God spoke to me: “That is what I see in Bryan– deep down he has a good heart that wants to help others, but he lives in such a difficult situation that he has so much anger and he takes it out here. See what I see! If you don’t intervene, he will turn to a life of crime.”

I responded, “Bryan, if you want to help others you have to help yourself first. If I were you and I had a person who cared about me like we care about you, I would try to do what they asked me with a great attitude because I know that they are trying to help me. Bryan, you have excellent pronunciation in English. I believe that you could use English in your future and accomplish many things. Do you think you could try to behave better so I can help you and others learn English better?” His answer was “Yes.” That day I taught the boys to say to the girls: “You are pretty; I am handsome.” We were working with them on their self-image and the importance of treating women with respect. They were very joyful about learning this and they all felt good as someone else told them that they were special. The girls also said to the boys: “You are handsome; I am pretty.” Such a simple sentence; such an important truth. God sees all of us as beautiful in Him. Bryan behaved well that day and for the first time, I sent a good report to his parents. To my shock, the next day his parents arrived at my church. I began to tell them about how proud I was of Bryan and his ability in English! Their faces showed total shock and then they started smiling proudly. Bryan also was smiling proudly. Bryan turned to me and said, “You are pretty; I am handsome.” I hugged him, tears flowing down my cheeks, and God spoke to me. “I haven’t given up on you; don’t give up on Bryan!” God doesn’t give up on us! He loves us in spite of our failures and worst behavior and His love reaches out to us and shows us in His sight we are all beautiful! I thank God and you for making Alturas and moments like this possible!