Heading in the Right Direction
“…Victory is won through many advisors.” Proverbs 11:14
Future veterinarian Rance is a young man with a plan and plenty of energy. Determined to make the most of the unique opportunities afforded him while living at OBHC, this wise fifteen year old keeps his eyes focused on the future and his feet busy in the present. Most days, you’ll find him at the barn working with Jennifer Kloeppel, director of the Equine Assisted Training program.
“Yesterday, we went to pick up six horses, got a bull out of his pen, fed the animals, cleaned pens for three hours, and unloaded a big trailer of hay,” says Rance, his face beaming with the satisfaction of hard work done well. When asked whether he volunteered or was “drafted” to perform those tasks, he looks a little confused. “Well, I don’t really know. When you are a part of the program, you just do that kind of stuff. You help the director and do what she says. I don’t really keep track. I like doing it. Besides, how are you going to learn to do something if you never actually do it?”
Rance says that he gets his can-do, go-get-‘em attitude from his father. “When I was growing up, my dad was always working on his degrees in his office. He had a lot of them, so when he went to get a job, they had to pay him more. I asked him how to do that, and he said you have to plan ahead of time so you know what you are going to do. Then you just do it.”
Rance’s plan is to attend OSU following graduation and vet school after that. In the meantime, he plans to participate in 4H and FFA to earn college scholarships and attend welding school so that he can put himself through school without going into debt. It’s a plan that will come to fruition under the vigilant watch care and guidance of his houseparents, Mr. and Mrs. Foster, rather than his father’s.
Rance explains, “My mom passed away when I was twelve, and my brother and I were left alone with my dad. He had a hard time and made a few bad decisions, so we went to live with my aunt and uncle. They couldn’t handle us because we were very disrespectful. My aunt decided that we needed to come here, and it truly impacted my life in a very positive way.”
Rance smiles. “I thought it was going to be like a prison, but the first day we were here, I realized how fun it was, how many kids were here, and how many privileges you actually got. I have friends here, and they have programs, things you can actually go out and do and be busy. I get to fish, hunt, show horses, all kinds of stuff. We go to church, too.”
“As soon as I finished orientation, I got to go to Falls Creek,” says Rance. “There, I accepted Christ and learned more about Him. When I got home, I found out my brother had accepted Jesus the very same day with my houseparents helping him. We were baptized together.”
Rance’s houseparents have been careful to see that Rance’s spiritual needs as well as his physical and emotional needs are met. “They pray with me,” says Rance, “and my housemom is always asking what she can pray for me for. They make sure that we get to all the church activities, too. I’m still learning from all the youth sermons I hear and the things our pastor says about sin. He says that you’re going to make mistakes, but that’s no reason not to try to do better. You have to be patient. Nothing good comes as soon as you want it to.”
Rance recently received good news: His father accepted Christ and is now his brother in Jesus. Rance is overjoyed and looks forward to seeing his father when he is able, but intends to stay the course and live at OBHC until graduation, even if another opportunity should present itself. “It’s the best place I’ve ever been,” he explains. “It’s impacted a lot of kids in a positive way and pointed them in the right direction.” When asked whether that is what OBHC has done for him, his answer is a decisive and enthusiastic “YES!”