Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children

 

One Step at a Time

"I will lead the blind by a way they did not know… I will turn darkness to light in front of them and rough places into level ground." Isaiah 42:16

SherydanExceptionally self-aware and poised, sixteen-year-old Sherydan is as careful with her words as she is with the second fresh start God gave her. Grateful for the unconditional love she's been shown by the patient and attentive adults of Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children (OBHC), Sherydan is determined to follow God's path for her life from now on, one careful step at a time.

A small-town girl, Sherydan found the initial transition to OBHC and a large school challenging. "I was kind of shy at first," Sherydan says, "but at OBHC, I learned how to open up to people. Once I was here for a while and got to know them, it was easier than I thought."

"I did really well the first year and had fun." Sherydan said. "I was actually planning to leave OBHC and go home over that summer, but then I messed up. I don't even really know why. It was stupid, and it undid a whole lot of hard work."

Following her poor choices, Sherydan was both surprised and relieved to find OBHC caseworkers were willing to walk her through a rough patch. "They let me stay," she laughs, still unbelieving. "I pretty much had to start all over again, but they helped me. They did whatever it took."

"I spent a long time dealing with the consequences of an impulsive decision, but I learned a lot from it." Sherydan continues, "The whole experience was a turning point for me. If I was able to go so long doing well, then just change course like I did, I realized there was something in me that needed to be fixed. I knew I had to get my stuff together."

Sherydan accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Lord and Savior the following July. "I got saved at Falls Creek and was baptized the week after we got back," Sherydan says. "It's made a big difference in my life. It allows me look at the other side of things and make the best decisions. My faith helps me fight temptation and enables me to be a better influence on the other girls in my cottage. I've been in my cottage longest, so I have a lot of influence. If I do something, then that lets them think it's okay to do it, so I want to be very careful."

Sherydan plans to stay at OBHC through graduation. "It's just better for me here," Sherydan says. "I have always been one to have big goals. I always want to do well. I realize that if I am going to achieve my goals, I have to put myself in a position to achieve them. If I went home, there would be pressure and temptation to do things like I used to, but that isn't going to get me anywhere. Here, I have an opportunity to do things differently and actually achieve my goals."

Understandably, Sherydan isn't sure what she wants to be when she grows up or where she wants to go to college, but she knows herself very well and is making wise choices which will set her up for future success. "I'm thinking about working in the medical field," Sherydan confides. "I'm taking Health Sciences Tech in school, where I get a chance to discover which part of the medical field I want to be in. I get to practice different things to see what I want to do. Then, whichever one I pick, I will get to spend half the day there during your senior year. For college, I think it would be best for me to go to a smaller school first and get my Associates degree, then I think I'll be ready for a bigger school."

Sherydan is grateful for the opportunity to take life one step at a time with a safety net of OBHC nearby. To those who have provided the safety net through their financial gifts, Sherydan says, "Thank you so much! I know you don't know us or always get to see what's going on, so I want to tell you that you're doing a really good thing. I've learned so much here, like how to be forgiving and stay positive when things are bad. I'm getting along with my family great now, too. I used to say I didn't care what they thought, but I do. Now, they tell me they're proud of me all the time, and it feels so good. You've changed my life."

November 2018


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