Our daughter graduates from TC Beauty College this week! Allyson is ready to be done and move on to the next phase of education (maybe at Cornerstone!) and using her cosmetology training in a job. We are so excited with her! We are proud of her accomplishments because she is extremely creative and talented, and she aced her final exams. PLUS, her facial and scalp massages are amazing! But, that's only a small part of why we are so blessed to call her our daughter.
Ally has spent the last couple of years taking her education at a slower pace so that she could work at the same time, because she knew her family would need her help. She sacrificed getting her own car, her time and many of her own desires. We did not ask her to do this, and frankly, we never wanted to be in the position of a job loss and needing the kids to pitch in out of necessity (rather than just for the sake of learning responsibility). Since our desire (like all parents!) is to help our kids get a great start in life, it's been hard to see her educational and financial beginnings become such a struggle. It wasn't easy on her end either. She may have chosen this route, but it didn't mean it was simple to help carry the burdens.
Nevertheless, she stuck to her convictions.
When it was embarrassing to answer questions about being done with school, because she knew people may have opinions about the length of time it was taking, she chose to give her embarrassment to God.
When it was frustrating to miss school because our cars weren't working and there was no way to get there (especially because it wasn't just a couple of times), she dealt with it. (A little venting may occur, but then a submission to God's control :))
When we would gather the family to pray about certain bills, she was quick to offer anything she had to help.
When her Uncle died, she saved her money to give to his family. How she managed that on top of everything else on a part time job, I don't know, but she is dedicated, and God has blessed that. She also was so afraid her cousins would not have a Christmas, she asked that anything we may be able to do for each other, go to them, even though she had needs, too.
When she got discouraged and knew she wasn't doing her best, we would talk and pray and she would always determine that, no matter how frequent and frustrating life's disturbances were, she was going to do her responsibilities well.
When she thought it may be better to just quit school altogether and work because of our income situation, she chose to stick it out and trust God for our needs.
Being at TC during the time Joel died brought about some witnessing opportunities that may explain one reason God has allowed this slower process. She had some people coming to her and saying that they were watching her and that they were affected by how her family was handling all the events that had been going on. They asked her about her faith in God. What a privilege it is to have her life story speak to someone else.
So, this is an exciting day, because Allyson has accomplished much more than a college certificate, and we are so proud of her!
Ally, these verses are for you:
3 John 1:4, I have not greater joy than to hear that my children walk in the truth.
(Checking Out for the Last Time)
Jer. 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
We love you! (On the Way to New Beginnings)