20 seconds to go and I crossed the finish line on the last round in our morning workout circuit. Panting with effort, but finished, I looked up to see a teammate still on her way. Struggling to finish, I think she knew there was no chance to complete the round before time was called; however, on she pushed. TIME! The call rang out and she was only a fraction away from the finish, and the three of us standing at the end saw the hesitation. Worn out and exhausted, with the official time called, she was done…or was she? Immediately I threw in a, “Come on, you got this, finish anyway!” My other teammates chimed in, and a mere three frog jumps and 10 seconds later and she joined us in exhausted triumph, having not given in to her own desire to stop short just because time was called. Beautiful, and rewarding for us all!
“Has God really said you can’t eat from any tree in the garden? You will surely not die! For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be open, and you will be like God…” and they ate. (my paraphrasing)
[A new notification pops up on my phone screen] Triple bonus stars on your Starbucks reward account if you buy a (super low calorie) Venti hazelnut macchiato Frappuccino today, 3-5 p.m. only.
Zacchaeus, despised because he extorts his own people, short, and ashamed; climbs a tree just to get a glimpse of this Jesus he has heard about, hoping beyond hope to be accepted. Jesus, in the throng of a multitude of people reached the spot, STOPS, and CALLS out to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” Acknowledging, inviting, and accepting him; so, Zacchaeus immediately came down and gladly welcomed Jesus. (my paraphrasing)
Whether 1,000 years ago, or five seconds ago on your smartphone, the human experience is constantly being influenced by factors, people and experiences, outside of just yourself. The question isn’t if, or even when, but HOW you will be influenced? Will it be positive or negative, and how/where are you positioning yourself in your everyday life to receive that influence?
This is what the VLA mentor program is designed to address. We want to be the entity, organization, and mentors who stop when we reach the spot of decision in a Seeker’s life and are the positive encouragement, calling out, and influencing to see a life take that next step in a flourishing, non-destructive, direction. Especially when, if we don’t, there WILL be an overwhelming array of influencing factors that are constantly vying to take them in the other direction.
To launch the next stage of our mentor program, Veritas Life Adventures is looking to partner with five churches, after school programs, or schools; to sponsor two qualifying mentors in your specific communities. These mentors will then engage with two Seeker youths within their specific community in our year-long program. If you know of any organizations interested, or are interested yourself, please email email@example.com to find out more.
Fellow seekers, you WILL be influenced, the youth that will be our future WILL be influenced. It is up to us to take action, encourage, call out, and see that the continual pull of self-destructive influences is pushed back with veritas (truth) flourishing messages instead. The only question left is, how will you act?