I am amazed by how God works.
When He calls you, He often speaks loudly and clearly. Sometimes, He uses one life to call many.
It was August 2012 when we met Justin. Football season had begun, and our youngest, William, had the team over between two-a-day practices. Our home was full, loud and happy. I will never forget the first time I met Justin. Immediately, he had my attention — I knew he was different, but I had no idea why.
As our friendship grew, we quickly learned life was challenging for Justin and his mom. This began a season of helping them — helping Justin’s mom with her struggles and helping care for Justin while she focused on rebuilding her life and getting healthy. Each month we prayed and re-evaluated, and it seemed that Justin was continuing to grow and become stronger. We told him the world was his and he could accomplish anything he wanted, and he believed us.
As we approached Justin’s sixteenth birthday that spring, the time had come to consider a permanent future for him. Nothing legal or formal, just a calling to love and care for him.
Justin grew tall, strong and confident. He graduated from high school — the first from his family — and was accepted at Hardin Simmons University as a football athlete. He graduated in May of 2018 earning a letter for playing four years of football and a business degree. Justin loves his family both old and new, is surrounded by friends and is thriving.
Exactly three years after that August day when we met Justin, God clearly spoke and said to us, “Go into the place he took you, take what you know, build a cornerstone in My name and spread My fame.” It was not about one — Justin. It was one step toward a larger work that God has for all of us.
This is the story of how Justin’s Place came to be and why it exists — to spread the love of Jesus.
- Donna Floyd, Founder and Executive Director of Justin’s Place