Our students come from all different backgrounds and have all different stories. We are so blessed and honored to become a family at our school and to share in their successes with them. Today, we are featuring the testimony of one of our students, Kenneth— a true success story. He is an overcomer and has been working through many the challenges he has faced in his life to become a wonderful man of God.
This is his story. . .
I remember being young and wondering what my peers thought of me — like any other normal kid with insecurities. I always worried about how I looked, acted, or how others treated me. I remember being laughed at when I was younger, and how much the rejection and humiliation affected me. Later on as I grew up, I developed a shell, a tough exterior that would protect me against what people thought of me. Well, little did I know that same shell that was supposed to “protect” me ended up preventing me from moving on and dealing with the pain. The shell, which was as symbolic as it was physical — a leather jacket — ended up weighing me down.
While continuing my everyday high school life, Sandra Jones, who I consider to be my godmother in a sense, called my mom and asked about my grades and such. My mom eventually told her that I was failing and depressed, without any real meaning in life. Sandra recommended a new, small, Christian high school, and she offered to pay for the tuition. How could we know then that New Community Academy would so dramatically change me?
The antidepressants that I once used just to cope with life, at this point, I now no longer use. The school has truly become a new family: Mr. Mark, who is the father figure which I never really had in my life; Mrs. Ann, who knows so much and inspires me; Mrs. Betsy, who is always patient with my pace in math; Mrs. Kimberly, who has connected me to the Lord and helps nourish that relationship; and Mrs. Michele, who has suffered like me, and yet has found a new meaning in life. She always smiles and asks me how my morning is going.
Last but not least, the students, who are like my brothers and sisters, care for me as much as I care for them. These little acts of kindness, little by little, eroded the shell, and eventually it just broke. With that, I have experienced a newfound freedom.
Hopefully, another student who has suffered might find their way into our family, too. And I thank everyone from the uttermost bottom of my heart for everything that they have done for me. I know I’m not the perfect person — I’m filled with faults and insecurities — and yet I ultimately thank Him who is faultless, born in the humblest of mangers, and who died on the cross for me. This is not only my story — God deserves the credit — it’s His story.
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Matthew 6:25-26