A couple week ago we posted this article about how YOU can be a champion for Grace. Today our post gives a first hand account from a graduate from the Saving Grace program. God is doing amazing things in the hearts of these young women!
“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope” Jeremiah 29:11
By: Kimberley A. Lane- Graduate of the Saving Grace program.
Saving Grace is a transitional home in Rogers, Arkansas for women between the ages of eighteen to twenty-four who have phased out of foster care or simply it is a safe place for women who are currently in an unsafe environment. I applied to Saving Grace in September of 2010 because my aunt had just kicked me out of her house and none of my friends or other family members had room for me. A pamphlet at a local church led me to Saving Grace. After I applied and interviewed, I was immediately accepted.
My first year in Saving Grace was a difficult one. Anger was all I felt for everyone around me. The staff, my mentors, and my RA’s were all my enemies. I felt as if no one in this world loved or cared for me because no one was able to take me in. I blamed the staff of Saving Grace for the pain I was feeling. Not only did I maintain a negative attitude, but I led several of the girls I lived with astray with me. We rebelled against the program and spoke openly about how horrible we were being treated. We lied to every person we came in contact with who asked about Saving Grace. Because of this behavior, the staff of Saving Grace wanted to ask me to leave. Several members of the board thought it was in the best interest of everyone if I were to no longer live there. However, Becky Shaffer, the founder of Saving Grace, saw something inside of me and refused to let me leave.
“God is keeping you here,” Becky had said to me, “I don’t know why, but you are still here because he wants you here.”
Soon after that, I decided to let God into my heart and to forgive all of the people who have caused me pain throughout the years. I started attending counseling regularly and participated fully in the program. My leadership skills were then used to help the girls in the house find out their own self-worth and to help them realize the value of Saving Grace. I then found a full time position at a retail store and have since then moved up to management. In February of 2013, I transitioned out of Saving Grace and now live in my own apartment. I still visit Saving Grace once a week to be involved with the girls and show them that I still love and care for them even though I no longer live with them.
Kimberley and two of her mentors
This program introduced me to a side of God I had never seen before. For the first time, I felt I was worthy of love. I lived in Saving Grace for two and a half years and was able to meet some amazing people. I have met women who walk into a room and God’s love radiates out of them. I have met others who have been through horrific events and yet hold their head high because they stopped their past from determining their future. I have met men who would die for their families and are determined every day to study God’s word and lead their families down the right path. No matter where God takes me in life, Saving Grace will always be my home. I know the women there will always be there for me. I have established friendships that will last a lifetime. Saving Grace helped me to trust God and to let him decide my future. Without Saving Grace helping me, I would be lost, hurt, and angry. I will forever be grateful to all those who support Saving Grace. May God bless your lives the way you have all blessed mine.
If you are in Northwest Arkansas and would like to learn more about Saving Grace, you can attend a fund raising event with us. Please contact comment below or Jennifer via our Facebook page for more information. If you simply want to donate to Saving Grace to help more girls like Kimberley, click here.