Beauty from Ashes

Jun 8, 2017

Steph Duff

“We’ve been praying for a while for a Mexican woman, from a local church to be called to lead the girls in Bible Study,” shared Grant Keys, Floreser Children’s Home Captain.

The girls at Floreser Children’s Home did have a faithful woman coming weekly for about two months, leading them in Bible Study. Later, when she was called to different work, Back2Back staff went back to their knees in prayer.

“As we continued to pray for someone to be called, I felt God urging me to lead in the midst of the waiting.”

And Grant said yes. He began to lead weekly Bible study with the girls, all the while, continuing to pray for a willing and able heart to come forward.

Grant led the first group Bible study three months ago. A completely optional opportunity for the girls, Bible study was a way for each girl to connect better with the others, but also learn more deeply who she is in Christ. Grant and the girls read through the Jesus Story Book Bible every week.

“We felt the Story Bible would be a good way to introduce each of the girls to the basics of Biblical stories,” explained Grant. Each week they gather around the table, every girl brings her own notebook and writing utensil and, with each week, a more softened and open heart.

“We read one story a week,” said Grant. “We read it aloud and then the girls write the date, the title of the story, and where it’s found.”

Grant encourages the girls to, as they’re reading the story aloud, write what captures their attention during the lesson. After they read through the story together and talk about it, Grant goes around the circle of girls and asks if they wish to share anything they learned from the lesson. The girls are slowly opening up and sharing more freely with each other, and with Grant.

“It was very important to me, from the beginning they know this was not a gathering where I could preach to them and they just listen,” explained Grant. “I wanted them to understand this was about them and their growth emotionally and spiritually. If we are each sharing our different point of views, we are going to learn and grow from each other.”

Grant and his wife, Kellee, have recently been inviting two girls at a time to spend Sundays with their family. Recently, following church, they were all by the swimming pool and one of the fifteen-year old girls came and sat by Grant. Like many of the girls served at Floreser, the young woman came from hard places and, as a result, questioned whether God was truly aware of what she walked through prior to her new living arrangement.

“I can feel God,” she shared quietly with Grant that afternoon. “When I pray to Him, during Bible study and when I am alone, I can feel Him reassuring me He’s always been around. I understand now that God has never left my side.”

Excited to hear about what she was learning, Grant smiled and said, “Some people go through life and never understand why they had to walk through something and, as a result, want nothing to do with God. But you are working hard at not allowing your past to define your future.”

Grant and Kellee are trusting the fruit from this Bible study and the work God is doing in their lives will bring beauty from ashes.

Steph Duff is a writer, daughter, sister, and really loud laugher. By day she lends her voice on behalf of orphaned and vulnerable children with Back2Back Ministries. By night she is readily found with her nose in a book and spending time with her dachshund, Addy. At all hours, she can be found consuming copious amounts of coffee. She feels most herself in the heat of India and prefers her mugs big, her books long, and her words intentional.

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