By Rhonda Carter –
Hannah stretched out on one end of the couch, with Jerry sitting on the other side. His brother, Rey, sat close by with Devin and Adam, while Maddie sat cross-legged on the floor. Soon Fabian joined the group. As they teased and joked, I was struck by how differences don’t matter here. There is a warm acceptance in this home on 15th Street that supersedes all else.
Hannah thought back to how they came together. She talked about a youth leader who had challenged them to live for God. A young woman who was like a second mom, who showed them Jesus in the way she cared. And when college graduation came for this leader, she could have taken a teaching job in Mississippi, but even though “she could have had a lot of money, she didn’t leave us, because it wasn’t about the money, it was about loving people.”
So loving people is what they do at the ACTS house, the home where this young woman chose to put down roots and open the door wide. The students support a Compassion child from Mexico, contribute to mission trips, and do what they can to assist others in the neighborhood. When there was a house fire nearby at Thanksgiving, they bought Christmas gifts for the family. They are family to each other as well, sharing life’s struggles and joys.
“We step into each other’s chaos,” says Hannah, which is what true family is all about.