When I wonder if God really can change people's lives, I have one direction I can point to with great confidence. Northwest. That is the point on the compass from my house to where Pastor KC Wahe lives.
Some 20 years ago, I met KC, who at that time, was one of the high school kids at my church. I did not meet his family, in fact, I never did. That is because his family was struggling with many issues, including alcohol and drugs. KC told me recently that he was recently overwhelmed when one of his boys, after an otherwise ordinary trip to the supermarket, told him that the family refrigerator was too full to hold any more food. KC then related how he, as a boy of his son's age, mostly remembered opening his own fridge as a child, and finding only an old jar of mustard, and lots of beer.
And now, he is a Princeton Seminary grad, and is pastoring a wonderful church in Little Rock, near Palmdale, amidst the rocks and cactus of the southern California high desert. This is not an American journey from rags to riches, but it is a journey from hopelessness to a place and time filled with hope. This is not a mega church in terms of numbers, but it is mega in terms of love, grace, mercy, and Christian community. I have been there, and I like those people!
What made the difference for KC? Why not more beer, a little apartment in Hollywood, and a downward spiral of life, just like others in his family? I think I might know why; I watched it happen. Relationships. Love. Involvement. People being there for KC. Christian community. Matter of fact, just like what God might be building in Little Rock.
I am thankful for my old friend KC today.