As I sat across from my friend from the streets of the inner city he said to me, “I wonder how I would have turned out if I had the opportunities you’ve had”? What a great question. My friend has been imprisoned several times and had a pretty hard life in many ways coming from a broken family with little opportunity and few role models worth following. So how would you expect him to turn out?
Fact is during my tenure serving downtown at FOCAS Ministries as one who was formerly from the suburbs that one of my great lessons learned is that there is little difference between any of us! And what difference there is comes primarily from opportunity afforded some and not others. I for one have been blessed with many opportunities in life that have catapulted me into a place in society that many would call functional and even successful. I was born into a great family, had loving and kind parents, saw many worthy role models growing up, was exposed to many great teachers, coaches and mentors, and thus had a great education. So this boy from the suburbs has turned out in society’s eyes as ok. Why? Did I deserve it? I don’t think so. I think more than anything I was born into it by the grace of God. The land and life of opportunity has accompanied me my whole existence.
But what about for my friends from the city and streets? What about those born on and into the lower spectrum of life? Paul said to the church at Corinth, “Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth.” We’ve all been given amazing grace in spite of ourselves. Don’t ask me why? Just be grateful and thankful and live like it!
Tom Lipsey - Director of Development