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Following Jesus Is Kourri's Desire

July 28, 2010

By W. James Edminson

The smile on fifteen-year-old Kourri’s face is genuine. It ebbs from a heart filled with devotion for Jesus.

“Everybody has ups and downs,” Kourri says. “Today, my ups are all about Jesus and helping others.”

Kourri and her family moved to North Carolina from Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. The family lost everything in the wake of the storm. Her father Steven placed his hope for a better future in God and the Tar Heel state.

“God’s the reason we are here,” Steven asserts. “I left it in God’s hands.”

The youngest daughter, Kourri was proud to follow after her older sisters. But her sisters began to make bad decisions. Kourri’s life began to fray like a cloth whipping in the wind. She was filled with anger and she fought depression. She developed behavior problems and became defiant at school and at home.

“I was in my own world,” she remembers. “I’m not sure why I was angry. I don’t even know.”

Kourri was diagnosed with various disorders and was being heavily medicated. But the problems lingered. Steven knew he needed help. He learned about Baptist Children’s Homes from a counselor in his community. The counselor recommended he call Broyhill Home in Clyde.

“When I came to Broyhill Home,” Kourri recalls, “it was like a big smack in the face – my eyes were opened, and I could see what I was doing.”

An undiagnosed health problem was corrected, and almost immediately Kourri’s behavior changed. The numerous medications are slowly being removed with help of area health care professionals, and the fog Kourri lived in is lifting.

“I have lost a lot of weight since coming off the meds,” she says. “I am beginning to see who the real me is – I’m liking the real me.”

Kourri accepted Jesus into her life and was saved last fall on November 22, at Woodland Baptist Church in Waynesville.

“My life has drastically changed,” Kourri says. “My relationship with Jesus is all about Him. I no longer desire to follow anyone but Jesus.”

Kourri is active in her high school’s ROTC. One of the brightly colored ribbons she displays on her uniform represents her commitment to community service.

“We help at the local food locker,” she says. “I help older people carry the things they need to their cars. I also tell them about Jesus.”

Kourri believes she is being most like Jesus when she is helping someone. “Jesus helped others. That’s what I desire to do.”

Focused on Jesus, Kourri strives to go beyond her best. “Most people give it one shot and quit. They follow earthly things. I encourage people to follow Jesus.”