Tindell Baldwin »

Cause When you’re fifteen….

Fifteen is a lonely place to be, constantly surrounded by competition and boys wanting all the wrong things. You are almost lucky if you make it out alive. I have never felt more lost than when I attended high school football games as a freshman. I had to be driven there by my parents, who went because my brother was the quarter back, and I would meet my one best friend by the lollipop stand. We would wander through the crowds looking for girls to talk to or older boys to look at. All the popular kids our age had one place that they hung out, in the corner by the concession stand. Normally girls would be there with their boyfriends, sometimes older guys, and it always ended up some couple was chanted into doing their first kiss in front of everyone. They would peck and the tiny crowd would erupt in applause. I had even heard of some girls going down to the practice field, behind the stadium, to make out with their boyfriends. I wasn’t in this group although I desperately wanted to be.

At Fifteen I had never had a boyfriend or a first kiss. I started to want to a part of the crowd as badly as I wanted oxygen. I wanted to be able to stand among the cool kids and not just because of who my brothers were. I wanted to have a strong upper classman hold my hand as I walked proudly around the stadium. Instead I was left following around my much prettier best friend, hoping no one noticed how insecure I was. I was shy and awkward, partly because I was so tall. I was terrified of any and all boys and turned a dark shade of red whenever one would talk to me.

All you are asking for at fifteen is to belong, to be loved, and to be a part of something. I wanted to be loved, but not for a night for a lifetime. I wanted to be found beautiful, but because of who I was not what I looked like. I wanted a community where I could be vulnerable, not just Friday night friends. I wanted so much and my Christian life seemed to provide me with so little.

As I walked the halls of high school today I realized not much has changed. Still boys wanting all the wrong things and girls desperately wanting to be loved. I watched a couple make out in the corned (not in a creepy way more in passing), heard a girl tell a guy in one of my classes things I will not repeat on my PG blog, and had a boy tell me he was only in school because his probation officer made him. I smiled, what else could I do. I couldn’t save these kids and more than ever I wanted to ask Jesus where he was. Why had he not made a big statement in Houston Texas but then the small voice in my heart said, “maybe thats why I sent you”. We all want to make changes in big ways but are we willing do it one humble person at a time? If i am not willing to love on these kids what makes starting a ministry any different? I keep begging God to let me change the lives of teenagers and every day he puts me in a place to make a difference. I’ll admit sometimes I try but other days I sit behind a desk, read a book about Christianity and ignore Gods simple task to me. Love others, love others, love others. Love the kids who don’t fit in. Love the boys who make rude comments and refuse to do their work. Love the girls who tell me i’m freakishly tall (which by the way I know). Love them and do this in remembrance of me says my mighty Savior.
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