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Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Hero Revolution: Lauren Allbritton

Today I want to honor and encourage another person in my life: Lauren Allbritton. When I first arrived at Baylor University as a freshman I was hungry for community and more of God. I went to a lifegroup my first week of school and was amazed by a community of people that loved Jesus passionately, had so much fun and were so open and vulnerable with each other. I kept going and eventually called the members of that group my best friends. About a month into the school year Lauren approached me and asked if I wanted to be discipled. I said yes immediately, honored that she would ask. Over the next two and a half years, Lauren faithfully invested in my life and is now one of my best friends.

Let me tell you a little more about Lauren. Lauren loves people so well. She pays attention to the details, asks good questions and remembers the answers! One time she had me write a list of all my favorite things, then over the next few months she surprised me with little gifts. I always feel so loved and valued by her. She taught me that loving people is more than spending time with them, it's putting others before yourself, meeting their needs and actively listening and responding. It's being willing to go to the hard places, work through conflict and then supporting and encouraging. It's having the attitude of how can I serve this person, rather than what can this person give me.

I don't think I've ever felt judged by Lauren, not once. She is so for those around her and nothing anyone says phases her. I remember several discipleship meetings where I had to confess pretty deep stuff, and she loved me through it without judging or condemning. She is able to love without condition, which makes her a safe, valuable friend. She has a way of communicating her own convictions and decisions without raising expectations. She supports rather than pressures. Because of that, my life has been radically changed because of her commitment to purity and holiness. People are attracted to the way she lives her life because she LOVES Jesus and believes that those who are pure in heart will see God (Matthew 5:8). This woman isn't afraid to let go of things in order to get more of God.

I'm forever thankful for you, Lauren! Your investment in my life changed me in so many ways. You are GOLD, my friend.

Lauren and I the end of my freshmen year.
Photos by Jeff Jones

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