Joshua Jacobson grows up in a small college town in Ohio. Everyone has dreams, and he is no exception. Joshua knows he wants to help people, but he doesn't know how. He goes through the normal motions of life, attending high school and then college, meeting the girl of his dreams, and marrying her. Still, he dreams of helping others.
Joshua has faith and prays, sharing his concerns and his questions with God. He wonders where he fits in the grand scheme of things. Eventually, he gets his answer, and he pursues his purpose with passion. There are bumps along the way, because even in the midst of joy, tragedy can rear its ugly head.
Although he faces trials, Joshua's dream grows beyond anything he ever imagined. He becomes a loved the highly respected member of his community and even earns notice from other communities. There are difficulties, but Joshua knows his Lord. His Lord is a loving God, and as Joshua pursues his life purpose, he finds success in a divine plan.
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Dreams Can Come True
Joshua's Life Journey
By Prudence Louise
Abbott PressCopyright © 2014 Prudence Louise
All rights reserved.
Do you believe that dreams can come true? Well, Joshua did. His parents were very encouraging and supportive of his dreams. They taught him that if his dream was a good one and was in God's will for his life, then with hard work, prayer, and God's help his dream would come true. So he decided to tell God about his dream, work hard to make it come true and ask God to help him.
One of his first dreams was to go to the little church down the street from his home. He could see other children going to the church and he could hear the music which he loved to listen to. Many times he would go to the small church and sit on the grass outside to listen to the music. One day he asked his mother, "Mom, may I go to that church down the street that has such nice music?"
"Let's go talk to the pastor," his mother said. "Then we can decide. Will that be all right with you?"
"Sure! Can we go right now?" Joshua replied.
His mother said, "I'll call the pastor and find out when we can meet with him."
She called the pastor who said it would be fine for them to come right then! So Joshua and his mother walked the couple of blocks to the little church. His mother noticed that the name of the church was Community Fellowship Church. When they go inside they meet the pastor who is a young man by the name of Luke Peters. Pastor Peters tells them that he is married and has two young boys.
Joshua asks Pastor Peters, "How old are your boys and what are their names?"
The pastor proudly tells him, "I think they are right around your age. Matthew is the oldest and he is eleven. His brother is Mark and he is nine. And how old are you, Joshua?"
"I'm ten but I'll turn eleven in a couple of months."
"Hey, that's great, you three boys could become good friends. Did you know you all have Bible names?" Pastor Peters commented.
"I didn't know that, but that is something. Mom, do you know I have a Bible name?"
"Yes, son, I do."
Mrs. Jacobson inquired about the church and what they believe. Then she says, "We are Messianic Jews and we don't have a place of worship in this area, but if Joshua would like to come to your church we will allow him to do so. He often listens to the music from outside and has asked if he may come here."
"That would be great. We have an excellent children's program. I'm sure Joshua would fit right in. I hope that you and your husband will also visit us often," replied Pastor Peters.
"I'm sure we will come from time to time."
They talk a little longer, then Pastor Peters takes them on a tour of the church building.
After that Joshua begins attending the Community Fellowship Church. He makes many friends there and does indeed become good friends with the Pastor's two sons, Matthew and Mark. As the boys learn about God's love and grace and about Jesus' life and sacrifice for the sins of mankind they become very interested in the Bible. They start getting together during the week to study it. When they have a hard time understanding parts of scripture they ask Pastor Peters for help. Soon they learn that God loves them very much and will forgive their sins if they believe in Jesus and the Bible. All three boys want to have their sins forgiven and learn to live like Jesus did. Meeting with Pastor Peters, they all prayed and accepted Jesus as their Savior. Shortly after that they are baptized as a testimony of their faith and commitment to God and Jesus. They have a lot to learn about following Jesus and they faithfully pray, study their Bibles and attend church. Helping each other stay faithful is one of the things they decide to do as they grow in their Christian walk. As they tell their friends about what they are learning in the Bible some of them ask if they can join with them, too! The Bible study grows and continues for many years and many of their friends also accept Jesus as their Savior. Joshua's biggest thrill is when his mother and father accept Jesus and start attending church with him!
The boys remain friends all through their school years and beyond. Matthew and Joshua are in the same grade and Mark is a year behind them. The boys are very active in sports, especially baseball. All three of them make the same team. With their positive attitude and fair play they keep the team showing good sportsmanship. They believe in doing their best, fair play, and having fun. The other teams always enjoy playing against them.
Besides sports, the church programs for their age are fun, educational, and inspirational. They all like learning new things so they do well in their school classes. Trying new things to see what they can do is fun for them. There is the school choir, drama club, and band, and they dare to push out and test their abilities. If they fail at something they don't feel bad because they did their best, and at least they tried. Because of their positive attitude they are outgoing and always looking for new adventures. They aren't afraid to venture out and so they learn what abilities they possess.
By the time they get to high school they know they want to go on to college. Good grades are more important now and they study hard to get the best grades they can. All three of the boys stay on the Honor Roll all through high school. It wasn't always easy but with hard work and perseverance they make it. Mark is a year behind Joshua and Matthew but he follows their example and stays at the top of his classes. When High school graduation time comes Matthew is valedictorian with Joshua less than half a point behind him. Their parents are very proud of them.
Even before graduation Joshua and Matthew have decided to go to the same college. They live in a college town and it has a very good college so they decide to live at home and attend there. Matthew decides to study law with the plan to help people with their legal matters who can't afford a high paid lawyer. Joshua's dream is to start a non-profit business to help college students succeed in life so he studies business management and learns the ins and outs of non-profit organizations and grant writing. When Mark is ready to start college he feels the call to go into the ministry and goes to a seminary to study.CHAPTER 2
While Joshua is still in college his parents become excited about his plans to start a center to help college students. The area doesn't have anything like that and it is so needed. When a large old warehouse, that is only a couple of blocks from the college, comes up for sale Mr. and Mrs. Jacobson purchase it to fix up for the center. They don't tell Joshua right away, but start doing some remodeling that is needed. When Joshua is in his last year of college his parents tell him, "Joshua, we are so proud of you and your dream of having a center to help college students that we have a special graduation gift for you. We are telling you about it now because you will have a lot of planning and work to do to make your gift ready to use. You know that old warehouse that is a couple of blocks from the college? It came up for sale and we bought it for you to start your center. We plan to do all we can to help you get it started."
Tears of joy come to Joshua's eyes as he thanks his parents. "Wow! That place is big and there should be plenty of room for everything I would like to include."
In the months to follow, Joshua studies even harder so he will be sure he is doing everything needed to start a non-profit organization. As he shares his dream with some of his college friends, one friend is especially excited for Joshua. Her name is Courtney Williams and Joshua knows her from church. She thinks his idea is great and makes some suggestions. He really appreciates her thoughts and they start getting together to discuss the center. His parents like Courtney and together, with Matthew and Mark included, the plans start taking shape. Matthew looks into the legal aspects of starting this kind of business and starts to work on some of the paper work that will be needed. He tells them that the first thing they need to do is come up with a name. After talking it over the group comes up with the name Faith, Hope, and Help Center. Faith for the name of the city, Hope for the name of the college, and Help because that is what they want to do. They all feel this is a good name for the center. Then all six of them start investigating what is most needed by the students they will be serving. Joshua and his dad start working on the layout of the rooms needed while Joshua's mom and Courtney start think about color schemes and decorating.
Joshua gets so used to Courtney being around and helping that he soon realizes he is beginning to depend on her. Is he falling in love? He isn't sure what his feelings mean. One day while he and his dad are working together he asks, "Dad, what does it feel like to be in love?"
"Well, son," Joshua's dad thinks for a moment then says, "You know how the Bible describes love. Reread I Corinthians 13:4-8. That will remind you of what love is. Then look at your feelings and see how much matches. Then read Ephesians 5:25-33. This is God's blueprint for marriage."
"I'll read those verses as soon as I get time. Is this what you and mother went by when you got married?" asked Joshua.
"No, son, we didn't know the scriptures that well at that time but I find that is how we felt even though we didn't know God's plan."
"Would you mind if I took a little break right now? I'd like to go read my Bible before I forget the verses you gave me."
"Go right ahead, I'll just keep working until you get back. Then we can talk some more if you would like."
Joshua goes to one of the offices that has some furniture in it and he knows there is also a Bible there. He gets the Bible and looks up I Corinthians and reads: "Love is kind and patient, never jealous, boastful, proud, or rude. Love isn't selfish or quick tempered. It doesn't keep a record of wrongs that others do. Love rejoices in the truth, but not in evil. Love is always supportive, loyal, hopeful. Love never fails!" Joshua thinks he has forgotten a lot of what love is. He decides that those are some verses that he would like to memorize. Then he turns to Ephesians to see what those verses say. There he reads: "A husband should love his wife as much as Christ loved the church and gave his life for it. He made the church holy by the power of his word, and he made it pure by washing it with water. Christ did this, so that he would have a glorious and holy church, without faults or spots or wrinkles or any other flaws. In the same way, a husband should love his wife as much as he loves himself. A husband who loves his wife shows that he loves himself. None of us hate our own bodies. We provide for them and take good care of them, just as Christ does for the church, because we are each part of his body. As the Scriptures say, 'A man leaves his father and mother to get married, and he becomes like one person with his wife.' This is a great mystery, but I understand it to mean Christ and his church. So each husband should love his wife as much as he loves himself, and each wife should respect her husband." After Joshua reads the scripture verses he stays in the office to think things over. In a short time, he decides to go back to help his father and to talk with him some more.
"Well, son, what did you learn?" his father asks.
"I find I never did pay much attention to what the Bible says about any feelings of love, I think Courtney and I should study these passages together. If we feel this is God's will for us, we will probably go talk to Pastor Peters."
"That sounds like a good plan to me. Would you mind if I share what we've talked about with your mother?"
"No, I don't mind. I know you and mother like Courtney and maybe you both will have some good advice for me. Well, back to work, it will soon be time to go home for supper," Joshua declares.
After supper Joshua goes to his room to finish his college homework and to think about all that is happening. The more he thinks about it the more he is sure that he loves Courtney. He plans to take some time the next day to see Courtney and have a talk with her. He prays that God will give him wisdom and guidance, then he goes to bed for a peaceful nights sleep.
The next morning as Joshua goes to the kitchen, his mother has a good breakfast started. She tells him, "Your father told me about your little talk yesterday. We really like Courtney and if you feel that this is the girl that God has chosen for you, we are happy for you. Keep us posted on what you and Courtney decide."
After they finish breakfast they take time for their devotions and prayers, like they do every morning, then it's time for Joshua to head for classes. When he sees Courtney after his third class he asks her if she has a minute. She says, "Sure, what's up?"
"I would like us to get together for a little while after our classes today as I have something important to talk to you about. Could we meet at the Snack Shack?"
"That sounds fine with me. See you there right after 4 o'clock."
Joshua had a hard time concentrating during the rest of his classes and right after his last class he rushes to the Snack Shack. Courtney arrives a few minutes later. They both order a coke and find a booth. Joshua is silent for a couple of minutes while he says a prayer then he starts to tell Courtney why he wanted to talk with her.
"Courtney, I find that I'm beginning to care a lot for you and wondered how you feel about me. Before you answer, I want to tell you that I would like to get to know you better and see what develops."
"Oh, Joshua, I've been feeling the same way, but didn't know what to do about it. I've been wondering if God has brought us together for a reason."
"How about if we go steady for the next couple of months to get to know each other better and then if we feel the same and our relationship deepens into love we will start making plans to marry. Does that make sense to you?"
"I think that is a great plan! You've made me very happy. May I tell my parents about these plans?"
"You sure can. My parents already know how I feel and they approve of our relationship. I'll also want to get to know your parents better."
During the next couple of months Joshua and Courtney spend a lot of time together getting to know each other better. When they aren't in their college classes they are either studying together or working at the center. As they get together to study, they first study the Bible and pray before they do their college homework. They find this works well for them. Their relationship centers around God and His will for them.
Enough grant money has been awarded them so the renovations can continue. The building is large enough that it will contain three offices, a conference room, and a small apartment, a library, music room, game room, computer room, dinning room, kitchen, ten tutoring or study cells, nurse station and sick bay, two shower rooms, four public restrooms, a lounge area, two storage areas and a large multipurpose room. The multipurpose room is large enough to seat at least three hundred people plus a stage area for performance groups or speakers. At the rate the work is going the center should be ready to open before the next fall semester at the college. Matthew Peters has the legal work almost done and they will be incorporated and have their non-profit status by the time they are ready to open. The next thing will be hiring the people needed to put the center in operation.CHAPTER 3
Joshua, Courtney and Matthew will be graduating from college at the end of May and Joshua and Courtney plan to get married in June. They love each other very much and feel that this is God's will for their life. Matthew will be Joshua's best man and Courtney's friend, Louise Morton, will be her maid of honor. Also the wedding party will include Mark Peters as groomsman and Meredith McRoberts, another friend of Courtney, as bridesmaid. Pastor Luke Peters will perform the ceremony. Joshua and Courtney decide they would like the wedding to be held at the center. It will be the fi rst event to be held there and since it means so much to both Joshua and Courtney, everyone thought this would be a great way for all their friends to see the center as they celebrate the union of Joshua and Courtney!
Excerpted from Dreams Can Come True by Prudence Louise. Copyright © 2014 Prudence Louise. Excerpted by permission of Abbott Press.
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