Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children

 

Air Force Bound

"Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the schemes of the devil." Ephesians 6:1

TroyTall, well-spoken and charming, eighteen-year-old Troy barely resembles the young teen who, four years ago, listed, "bicycles you can ride and all the bananas you can eat" (among OBHC's most attractive selling points in an interview). Air Force bound, this confident young man is now thankful for so much more than handy snacks and available entertainment.

"I feel like I'm ready for what comes next," Troy says, a slow smile affirming his words. "OBHC helped get me ready."

Troy is scheduled to ship out for Air Force boot camp in late August. "I'll be in boot camp eight weeks, then 151 days in technical school, and then I'll be working my actual job," he explains, excitement lacing his words. Troy's enthusiasm is contagious. When asked if he's nervous at all, Troy chuckles, "Nah! Just excited."

Troy had planned to enlist in the Army upon his graduation from high school, but discovered the Army didn't have the kind of program he was looking for. "I'll be learning about cyber systems," Troy explains, "where you make, install and protect firewalls that protect information and important data. If they deem you worthy, you can even gain top security clearance. It sounds like a really great opportunity! They pay salary, medical insurance, and I heard you can retire earlier in your career." Troy smiles. "I'm trying to be smart about my future."

Troy's family is very proud of the young man he has become. "I was driving my grandpa from my graduation to the graduation dinner for me and my brother," Troy says, "and he broke down in tears before we ever left campus. He's really happy for me."

Troy knows he has the caring Christian adults of OBHC, who have all taken an active interest in his life, to thank for much of the progress he's made over the years. "I feel like I've gotten more mature personally and spiritually, and learned how to take responsibility for things because of them," Troy says, "but I can't really tell you a specific moment I learned any of it. I guess I mainly just learned by watching what they said, and how they responded to things that happened. Also, if I ever had any spiritual questions, they'd answer them. If they didn't know the answer, they'd find out. They are very dedicated!"

Troy continues, "Both sets of my houseparents, have been awesome, but the office staff has been great, too. Every time I see them, they're always asking me questions and encouraging me." One family even taught him how to cook. "I'm really good at it. I've been told I should be a pastry chef. I bring the things I make to school and share them with my friends." Troy adds with a laugh, "Sometimes they find me early and ask what I brought for them to eat!"

Troy put his faith in Jesus Christ for salvation while living at OBHC and hopes to do for fellow Airmen what his OBHC family did for him. "Essentially, it's a mission within a mission," he confides. "I'm hoping the people around me will see the way I'm doing things and pay attention to my actions and my words. If they do, they'll see me living a life of integrity and see my faith is real. Hopefully, they'll want to join me and live for God, too."

Troy is grateful to those who support OBHC financially and hopes to make them proud as a member of the United States Armed Forces. "You've done so much for me it's hard to comprehend it all!" he says, shaking his head. "My life is so much better because I came here."

August 2018


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