One of the first students that I met when I moved to Tacoma, Shakilya, is now a senior at SOTA. I used to teach her dance in the after school program I worked in four years ago, and she used to attend Sozo with me. She has a few classes in the building where my office is so I get to see her multiple times a week. She is such a strong leader and highly called by God to shape and influence the lives of children all around the world. She will be one of the kids that I know will join me in Africa someday!! Shakilya has been one of the many girls that I have been praying for to run with Jesus in this city and we have had a continued discipleship relationship over the last few years. I see it as a miracle that God would allow me to be in her life at her school.
This last week, Shakilya had an explosion of anger at school and wound up getting in a fight with one of her dance classmates, Taylor. She and Taylor were pulled out of their dance classes and sent to the counselor’s office. One of the principals of the school approached me, knowing that I have had a relationship with Shakilya, and asked if I’d take her as my office assistant twice a week….um, of course I will!!! I’ve been praying for an opportunity to have consistent time with Shakilya over the last year and a half, because she’s been a little distant, and now God has directly answered that prayer.
The next day, the counselor and both of the principals asked if I could find mentors for all three girls – Shakilya, Taylor, and Shakilya’s friend Iona who got looped into the altercation. I was able to introduce myself to Taylor and she lit up when I walked into the room. I asked her if she’d like a mentor to talk to and start taking care of some of the stuff that’s going on in her heart that has kept her angry. She was eager to get a mentor and I even talked to her about starting to volunteer with Kids Sozo, another ministry in Tacoma that reaches out to elementary kids, since she loves to dance and likes kids. I was able to ask Shakilya and Iona if they wanted me to mentor them and meet with them once a week.
The coolest thing is that one of the principals, my boss, asked if I could set up a system through Sozo to filter SOTA students into a mentor relationship when they get into trouble at school. I pretty much flipped out of my seat when he asked. He said, “This is why it’s so great that you’re here at SOTA; this is what you wanted with ministry, right?”
So, God’s handed me the keys to take the young artist at SOTA that are opposed in so many ways and usher them into a mentor relationship with adults that will love them and that I already work with through ministry! Wow, wow whoa!! God has set this whole thing up and I get to be a part of it!
I must confess, I feel like I have no idea how to get everything done when I go to work and then the Lord throws me things like being in charge of making sure kids get loved and mentored when they have an encounter that forces them to face what’s really going on in their heart.
I really need your prayers in this season.
Please pray for my finances. God has provided more than what I’ve asked him for and I want to make sure I honor him with what he’s given me. I am specifically asking God for money for art supplies to take into Remann Hall, iTunes gift cards for music, money to take girls to dance classes, and food money to take kids out for milkshakes and get to know them.
I would love your prayers in protection from accusations from the enemy of God. I know he tries to steal and I’ve seen ways that people have looked with a skeptic eye at why I love working with teenagers so much, and I’ve been told that I need to “careful” when working with teenagers and to keep my distance. Please pray against this scheme of fear that wants to keep me held back.
Thanks for sticking with me in all this, I know that I am loved and supported by each of you.