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Chapter One


So many people are hurting or hiding from personal brokenness, or handicapping innocent victims with their deep-rooted pain. They’re looking for an outlet to let it go peacefully or violently, or somewhere in between. The pain has to go somewhere because those bound by it are so tired of being dragged around by the chains of desperation, despair, or despondency. Will you help them break free in the name of Jesus?

I was speaking to an audience of approximately 300 people when I noticed a white male in his early twenties standing by himself off to the side in the back of the room. He looked a bit disheveled and distraught—something was really bothering him. He started to get even more agitated as I highlighted pivotal moments of my life story.

When my speech ended, this gentleman, whom I’ll refer to as Jerry, waited his turn to share a few secrets with me. As he approached, I stood up to greet him just as I was placing the last few items from my presentation into a large tote bag. He looked around the room to make sure no one would hear him.

“Lawrence, your story really hit home with me,” he said. “I’m homeless and don’t know where to turn. I’m very embarrassed about how my life has turned out.” As he fought to hold back the tears, he added, “This has been one of the best days of my life because you took the time to listen to all of my problems. And you even prayed for me. I have hope to make it to another day.” He hugged me and then exited the building.

Jerry is representative of millions (or more likely billions) of people who are suffering. They’re searching for answers and looking for people who will treat them with respect, regardless of their appearance, financial status, or job prospects (see Leviticus 19:15; Luke 16:19–25; Acts 10:34; Romans 2:11; 1 Timothy 5:21; and James 2:1–9).

You just might be the person God uses to brighten up their day and point them to Jesus Christ. It’s the thought that counts.

We need more Christian men and women to step forward as mentors. Our young people need role models who practice what they preach spiritually and professionally.