My mom always says that most kids bring home lost animals but I brought home lost souls.
I know I was bound and determined to be where I am today. My entire life has set me up to be in the line of work and lifestyle that I live.
It is really easy to mentor young people when you just pick them up for ice cream and talk about school work and their dreams.
But there are times when it doesn't matter how many times you talk or show them the light sometimes they still choose darkness. You can pray all day every day and they still choose to lie, cheat, steal, sneak around, and make dangerous decisions.
When I mentor, I mentor with my heart. I always try to give them my true self, to be as transparent as possible, because there are too many fake people in this world. And when you mentor someone over a long period of time you begin to feel what they feel, you hurt when they hurt, you feel joy when they feel joy. And when they mess up royally you feel like it was a slap in the face. Like there should have been something I could have done to prevent it. Often when this happens you can see the other side they can't, you can see the light, you can dream for them, you can see their future, and all they can see is right now and are in survival mode.
I know this also comes when you're a parent. I don't have children of my own yet. But there are many young people who I feel are mine. I pray for them, dream for them, hope for them, and support them in every way I know how.
Doing what I do and being who I am, I have found myself many times with a broken heart for someone that I want nothing more than to help, but they are refusing to see the light and are choosing to live in the darkness they have known for years, because familiarity is easier to handle than the chance the light might not work out.
And so I find myself in a state like I am today. With tears in my eyes and sadness in my heart, but knowing that I couldn't love them more, at this point I have to let them go. I have to give them to the only one who can truly love them through the darkness. I have to let go and trust that God will protect them and hold on to them even if they are lost for awhile, he has plans for them, and hopefully one day soon they will see the light and will see how beautiful life can be when they walk away from the pain.
So this one is for all those souls in my life that I love dearly. I will continue to love you and pray for you, but today I am letting go of whatever control I wish I had and letting God love you in His perfect unconditional way.
I Couldn't Love You More -- Matt Hammitt