The latest group of children came last month. I found myself doing a craft with the kids that I had done as a child. And not only was it the same craft, I was doing it in the same church I grew up in. This was a very special moment for me.
One Wednesday we went with the Ukrainian orphans to Holtville Riverside. I had spent many years of my youth in this church. I spent many hours sitting my grandmother through sermons and spent many summers in VBS playing cartoon freeze tag and learning about Jesus.
That night we made Salvation Bracelets something I had done there as a child. I sat next to them, one of the few adults do in the craft. We practiced our colors (them in English, me in Russian). The church staff shared with them the meaning of each bead. I beamed; we were sharing the story of God with the next generation.
This is what really got me with this group: I was helping shape the next generation. Not only was I helping them try to get their lives back on track, I was helping them to shape the future of our world. God has tasked me with something way bigger than myself and with something way bigger than each child I work with. I am blessed to be changing the world, hoping to leave it better than how I found it.
Bridges of Faith is a miracle for these children and a miracle for me. Each group changes me in ways I never expected. I just hope that I have helped them see they are loved.
Salvation Bracelet Meaning
Represents the belief that everyone sins and that sin makes it impossible to have a relationship with God.
Symbolizes the blood of Jesus and the belief that faith in Jesus and his sacrificial death are necessary for the forgiveness of sins.
Stands for purity and the Christian teaching that once you put your faith in Jesus, your sins are forgiven and you are made pure. 1 John 3:5 is the verse used alongside this bead, and it says, “But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin.”
Represents water baptism, which is a way of outwardly expressing the inward change that has happened.
Teaches the need for continued growth in the faith.
Gold or Yellow
This bead represents the streets of heaven lined with gold. Believers look to the day where Jesus will return to earth to take his followers to heaven with him.
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