The story of exploring the promised land is mind blowing. A quick primer: Israel is getting ready to
enter the promised land and has sent out spies to survey the land. They come back with a glorious
report of a rich land with milk, honey, and grapes the size of your head. BUT the people there are
giants, they will devour us. Two spies see it differently. Why? One has their perspective on God. For
them their “BUT” is “BUT God is with us. God has given us this. Don’t be afraid.”
A young man with mental health issues who is living with a mother with mental health issues
might not have hope in the future. BUT GOD led our staff to intervene. We reached out to the
mother and got our student the help he needed. The mother wanted to make sure that he could
work with us over the summer – to earn money but also to continue to learn how to be a man. One
of our mantras is, we don’t give up on ya, but we don’t give in to ya.” Pastor Tyrone poured
himself into this young man. He is now on track to graduate and also volunteers at our food
A five-year old boy finds his mother dead, with a needle in her arm. He is traumatized. BUT GOD
led his grandparents to move back to New Orleans to care for him and his older brother. Last
summer, when was struggling through depression and even suicidal thoughts, our summer staff
counseled and encouraged him and his grandparents. They reminded him that God made him
special. Our director Elijah says that this child is now the happiest one in our program.
A student going on a mission trip to UIM may not think they are going to be a pastor. BUT GOD
took hold of the heart of a young man from Florida who has served as an intern with us for the past
two years, and he has decided to become a youth pastor.
When people graduate from our programs, we may not hear from them again. BUT GOD led a
father who was a part of our high school group in the 1990’s to bring his son to us. He wants his
son to learn about God and how to follow God, just like he did years ago at UIM.
Though the settings are different, the “But God” is there for all of us. Having a perspective that God is
for us, that He never leaves us nor forsakes us changes our lives. The struggles are real, but through
Jesus’ death on the cross, we know that hope is greater.
This past year we have witnessed many “But God” moments.