This weeks blog is written by Ernesto (Ernie) Perez, son of my partner in ministry, Patty Perez. It is part of his reply to my e-mail congratulating him on starting classes at Rutgers – the State University of New Jersey. the same college from which I graduated almost 45 years ago. What he says reminds me that God has a plan for each one of us, even before we even realize it. To put it another way – God has hopes for us. To the extent we listen to and cooperate with God, these hopes will be fulfilled.
Grace and peace, Ray
I’m very excited about going back to college. There’s a lot that’s changed in me since 2002 when I made my first attempt. One of those things is my appreciation for the support everyone is giving me. I thank God every day for putting people like you and my mom into my life. I can’t help but smile when I look back on my life and see where I was and where I was headed, and realize that all the events of my past – my failings, my successes – weren’t random trial and error attempts at life. It’s all part of God’s plan for me. It’s all building blocks He uses to shape us into the person we need to be in order to fulfill his ultimate plan for us. While it could be depressing to think I’m almost 30, still live at home, and work a dead-end job – it’s not depressing to me because I realize now that nothing is a coincidence, but that everything happens for a reason. I’m back at another outstanding college, going for the same degree I was before, but I’m a much stronger person now. It’s like I was always meant to be here and whatever God has planned for me next requires an incredible strength of character, so He took me on that little detour and toughened me up. Realizing this, I’m so excited I feel like He has something big planned for me, and I can’t wait to see what happens next. I know I have what it takes now to capitalize on this opportunity and move forward. It’s not going to be easy by any means, but rarely are the worthwhile things ever easy. As my mom keeps telling me, ” I can do all things through Christ, who strenghtens me”.
Thanks for your attention. We look forward to hearing your comments about our web-site. We also invite you to send us stories of your experiences and observations of present hopes and hope fulfilled, so we can spread them around the world via this web-site. This is one way we can all join together to help keep hope alive.
May God be with you,
Patty and Ray