A month ago, I wrote about a set of doors that I had been entering often beginning in 1993.
Today, a group of students will enter through this door and begin a season of life dedicated to improving their current station in life.
FaithWorks of Abilene is an amazing place. Our mission is to help the underemployed, through personal, career, academic and spiritual development, acquire the confidence and skills for gainful employment.
We try to help restore lives.
As we begin class today, I think about lives; stories; people.
I think about people like Susan and Rosario and Tracey; former students who have gone on to work or higher education.
I think about people like Jeri and Lloyd and Rudy; students who are not working due to a variety of issues yet they volunteer and look for ways to serve in their communities.
I think about people like Michael and David and Lacey; former students who are still fighting to find direction in their lives.
I think about people like Foy and Terri and Jason; former students we wish were still here with us.
And there are so many other names: Chauncy and Vivian and Annette and Brandi and Kevin and Mark and Darrell and Becky. Name after name after name.
More than 350 of them.
350 lives changed. 350 families changed.
And today I have a list of 23 names. Names like Amy and Ian and John and Colton and Nikki. Names that belong to people with all sorts of backgrounds and stories to tell. Names that will begin telling a new story.
I have no idea what tomorrow will look like. But today, I have an opportunity to welcome 23 people through this door.
Hopefully, beyond this door something will be said or experienced that will spark within these new students the process by which they can realize what we so deeply believe to be true:
“It is never too late to become what you might have been.”