I was there, that week in October - the week that the 47 went missing - I had been there before but this time was different. It was nerve wracking. Once in there you could tell very quickly that things were not right. But it's not our place, you can't call Social Services or face off with some house mother - accusing her of exploiting these kids for personal gain. Believe me - you want to- but at the same time you know that if you do, you will never go in there again. Never see them again. Never know if they are all right. It's a terrible position to be in.
That was a long car ride, leaving that place an onto our next task. Full of prayer and fear. Wondering what was next for these girls. And we found our answer, a complete campus set on 13 acres with fruit trees and vegetable gardens. Room to run and play. A quiet place to heal. It was as if God had put us in this situation to stir our hearts and then - just as quickly - provided the solution. The abandoned project that would become Grace House.
I'm typically not one to hear directly from God. I can't recall a time that I ever had but that night, after we began to consider whether this was our mission I heard loud and clear that this is exactly where we were supposed to be and what we are supposed to be doing.
I went to bed that night, just as any other night but this night God spoke to me during my sleep. I was dreaming about this abandoned facility but now - in my dream - everything was completely renovated, girls were there laughing, smiling and playing - it was beautiful. God spoke to me saying "I will open this door, you just have to walk through it." Now, I'm not known to walk in my sleep but in the middle of the night, on that night, I woke up to find myself standing in an open doorway. I was startled and just stood there for a few moments, the realization of what I was experiencing becoming ever more clear. I made a commitment right then - I will walk through the door if this is what You want.
I slowly and quietly closed the door so as not to disturb the others sleeping and got back in bed. I awoke the next morning thinking about what had happened the night before, anxious for Stacey to wake up so I could share it with her. And as the morning light began to fill the room, wouldn't you know? The door that I had closed during the night was wide open once again. I was absolutely certain that God had confirmed to us that this is to be our project. He left no doubt and I am grateful for that.
We look forward to their arrival. To their developing a relationship with a loving God. To their educations and graduations. To their marriages and children. To watching them step out to become all they can become through the grace and power of a God whose love knows no bounds. A God who knew these girls before they were born. Who has incredible plans for each and every one of them.