Safe and Sound
“I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13
Sibling group Denton, Amanda, Autumn and Thomas have lived at Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children for almost two years. When asked whether or not they like living here, the answer is a unanimous and slightly overwhelming “YES!”
“It’s the best!”
“I love it!”
I can’t tell for sure who has just said what. They are an enthusiastic and extroverted bunch, the exception being older brother Denton, who seems comfortable in the role of watcher and wise old soul. When asked what makes OBHC so great, his younger siblings rattle off a list with carefree ease. “We get to do band and choir now! We have activities! There’s a rec room!”
Denton thinks before answering, measuring his words. “I like it here because they provide food, shelter, and clothes. We have somewhere to live. They take care of us...”
Little brother Thomas interrupts, “Yeah, what Denton said is good, but we also get to play Xbox, ping pong, air hockey, game Cube…”
“Basically, there’s never nothing to do,” Autumn adds, eager to contribute.
Laughing and chatting with these happy children, it’s hard to believe that they have ever experienced fear, heartache, or hardship, but they have. Just nine months ago, they lost their mother to illness.
“Yeah, she was really sick. She couldn’t really take care of us,” Denton explains. “We used to have to live in hotels. It was kind of scary.”
“THREE hotels,” Amanda interrupts.
“Yeah, three,” Denton continues. “She made a deal with the managers. We got to live there if she cleaned the rooms, but she was too sick to do it.”
“We helped her,” the girls offer, understandably proud of their contribution to their family’s welfare.
Denton, Amanda, Autumn and Thomas came to live at OBHC long before their mother passed away at the urging of their counselor and local church leadership. When their mother did pass, the children found ready comfort and calm security in the love and support of compassionate OBHC adults.
“They taught us not to be afraid and that God will always take care of us in bad situations,” says Thomas, sitting still for the first time since our interview began.
“That’s right,” Denton agrees. The girls nod.
“I believe in the one and only God,” Thomas continues with more volume, bolstered by the support of his siblings. “If you believe in Him and trust Him more, you can get more strength from Him.”
All of the children have made professions of faith and are growing spiritually, and each is excited about his or her future. Denton plans to be an engineer. Thomas plans to be an “army-type guy.” The girls both hope to be missionaries, but Amanda is still considering practicing law.
“Wanna see why?” Denton laughs. “Just argue with her. Go ahead. Try it!”
“Um, no, don’t try it,” Autumn laughs. “You’ll regret it!” Amanda smirks and raises an eyebrow in my direction.
For now, the children are content to stay where they are and put down deep roots. To those who support OBHC financially, Denton speaks for the group when he says, “Thank you, thank you for donating all this stuff for us. We’re going to turn out good!”