Jeremiah Laffoon

I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa to a family of five, and raised in the small country of Malawi. Being born into a Missionary family, I grew up exposed to various cultures across the world. Mostly African, but I had also traveled to places like Spain once for a little retreat for Missionary families. So my proudest achievement is having crossed to three of seven continents: Africa, North America, and Europe. However as of early 2018, my family left the mission field and came to stay in the States for good. Although I had all my family in America, I didn’t exactly have a place there. I had only been to two schools before where I had made some friends, and the churches that we would attend during our few brief visits here over the years. Not to mention, we had always stayed in Kentucky for those visits. However this time, we took up residence in Missouri. So I had zero connections there aside from my grandmother. I had grown absolutely sick of homeschooling after doing it all my life, so my family tried sending me to public school. However due to the shellshock of how crass and uncouth a lot of the kids could be, I was rather offput and worried about my future around such influences. So going back to square one, I had my mother take me out of the school. After which, I became so apathetic to school and unsure of what to do with myself, that upon my grandmother’s recommendation I was sent to another private school; PLA. I attended the second semester of eighth grade before most of my class left for public school, and the school had moved to a new campus. So it was like starting at square one again. However that year, I got to know my classmates and teacher far better, and would carry a few of those friendships into the next year. Which turned out to be even more excellent than the previous year. That trend continued despite constant loss and gain of classmates throughout the rest of my years there. By the end of my time in high school, I had really found a life for myself here. I had excellent influences in my life, stability, and had an amazing part-time job at Rusted Route. All of this has helped me develop my own individual identity – and now we arrive at the present. I’ve seen the richness life can have, the sorrow, and the better tomorrow. Much of that I had been able to see during my time as a student, whether I had been the target of it all or if it was someone I knew. I recognize that God’s hand has been shepherding me my whole life, and the people carrying out his will were no small part of it. Because I’ve been so lucky to have a watchful shepherd guiding me, I’ve developed the desire to do the same for others. Who is more innocent and lost than the children in this world? I recognize that many of them do not have the luxury of hope or security, and that can be overwhelming so easily. So I am excited to be able to stand out in their lives somehow, and maybe have the chance for them to trust me to push them in the right direction. Which is not something I regard as exclusive to my own class, but to all the kids at the school. I have faith that with the strength of God and fellow believers, that this will be a year of great opportunity, and growth for everyone here. I’m most excited that the Lord continues to invite me to be part of his plans here. I hope that I can be a reliable friend, influence, and ally to many!

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