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From the Inside Out
Provided by LIFE International

Carnival in Santa Cruz is a three days celebration of wild parties, which the government calls national holydays. In every city there are different traditions and celebrations, but they all involve a combination of dancing, alcohol, and sex. It is common to see closed streets, people drunk everywhere, and lots of young people acting foolish.

After carnival, we know we’ll have a busy month at the center. Today I had my first client as a consequence of this event. “Renata” was very quiet, and showed herself very shy at the beginning. She was still processing the fact that after carnival, and after knowing the possibility of her being pregnant, her boyfriend left. He is not living at his house anymore, and he doesn’t reply to any of her phone calls.

Yes, she was considering abortion if she was pregnant. She kept asking herself, What else could she do? She just turned 15 two weeks ago, has been living with her aunt the last two years. Her dad already told her that an abortion would be the best if she ever gets pregnant while being in school. She feels so lonely. She wishes her mom would be there for her, she doesn’t know how, but she knows things would be different, if she were with her and not working overseas.

Moments like this makes me feel so blessed of what God allowed in my past. I could tell her that my mom was exactly her age when she got pregnant, her dad and family members tried to convince her to interrupt her pregnancy, and her boyfriend paid for an abortion, and left her alone. I also know what it feels like having our mom living overseas and wishing she could be with us. But, I also know a God of mercy and love; a God who blesses obedience, and is a provider in all circumstances.

Renata never heard before about the personal relationship we all can have with God. She also heard for first time about his promises, and about the difference only He can make within us. The Holy Spirit touched her heart, and when she left I not only had a friend, but a sister in Christ. Our discipleship starts next week, and I am sure there is so much to see as God starts changing her life, from inside out.