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The Sound of Gratitude

Posted By Bianka Costa On March 4, 2009 @ 7:53 am In Country Staff | 9 Comments

music-gratitude At the age of 3, John had his first contact with music. It was at a Compassion child development center.

Everything in John’s life could be dissonant if a particular day in his past hadn’t happened. Now, like in a beautiful symphony, John is conducting his life in a new tone – the tone of leadership.

John was 12 when everything happened. It seemed to be the last straw when the director of his former child center called his name and said, “I want to see you in my office now.”

Frightened, John walked to the place so familiar to him because of his aggressiveness and disobedience. But this was a day he didn’t do anything wrong. Sso he thought, “It’s done. There is no way out.”

He was right. For sure there was not.

“I was always reprimanded by my teachers for beating my classmates. Even though I was in the office almost every day, until that day the office didn’t scare me.

“To my great surprise, my director introduced me to a special person who in a short period of time would become my music mentor. It was the director’s last shot trying to save me; and it worked very well.”

John learned how to play guitar at the child center and the notes of his life started synchronizing.

By the age of 15, John was a peaceful person, passionate about music, and dreaming about becoming a great concert performer. But something was still missing in his life.

“At a youth camp I realized how important our decisions are and how many decisions are important ones that we have to take along our lives.

“Until that moment, it was a sacrifice for me listening to my teacher talk about God, but I figured out that there is only one truth, and one path – Jesus. So I made my choice.”

“He changed unbelievably for the better,” says one of his former monitors.

“He is no longer the same. There was a radical change,” agrees another one.

Music gratitudeJohn’s passion and dedication to music touched his mentor’s heart, who with much determination succeeded in getting John a music scholarship in a very good music school.

John was 16 years old when his teacher gave him such precious gift. But just saying “thank you” was not enough for the quiet young man.

Now, twice a week after college, where John studies the Business Administration with help from the Leadership Development Program (LDP), he goes to the child center and conducts a kids’ choral.

“Through these classes, I give to the children. I try to teach them more than music. I want to teach them the true path.

“I know that just like it used to be for me, sometimes they feel bored learning about the Bible. But I know that one day they will understand.”

John also works as a volunteer music teacher at a public school, leads the music ministry at his church, and teaches guitar to two other students at his home. Besides college, church, LDP meetings and children’s music classes, John practices guitar four hours per day, while still making time for his girlfriend.

“God is my strength,” he says.

John’s discipline, self confidence, talent and great grades ensured him a place in the Leadership Development Program.

John’s relationship with the other LDP students is very honest, and he supports his friends, encouraging them with his words. They rejoice with each other’s achievements.

“I used to be very rude to people I didn’t agree with. Now, with my LDP classmates, I am learning how to be responsible with people feelings.

“My parents, who always loved me, now are proud of who I became.”

John is now studying a lot in order to achieve another dream: a musical school for children in need [3] – the reason why he chose to study business administration.

John’s talents as a musician were appreciated by nearly 300 young people who were graduating from the Child Sponsorship Program in a touching ceremony last December.

Very concentrated, John played three peaceful songs of his authorship, and hundreds of attentive eyes experienced the sound of gratitude.


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