Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children

 

Staying the Course

“Make level paths for your feet....” Hebrews 12:13

TorrenRenaissance man at heart, seventeen-year-old Torren is equally interested in a variety of unique and creative pursuits and finds that living at Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children provides him with the structure necessary to both do well in school and explore those pursuits with energy and enthusiasm.

“I’m into sword-fighting,” Torren announces, “dueling, more specifically. My dad started training me as soon as I could hold a sword. I wouldn’t call it fencing. It’s more like you might see when you watch Lord of the Rings. It’s free-form, Medieval.” When asked whether he likes to spar with others, Torren responds with a chuckle, “Sure! I’ll duel anyone who is willing, but I don’t get many takers.”

“I also love writing!” Torren continues. “I write medieval short stories, science fiction, historical fiction, basically anything that other people would be willing to read.” With a tilt of his head, Torren adds with a smirk, “Of course, I’ll have to finish something before anyone can read it. I’ve got about twenty stories in the works, but can’t seem to finish them.”

When he’s not dueling or writing stories, Torren composes. “I’ve always been interested in music,” he confesses, “but I only started taking it seriously this year. I like classical music best, but, so far, I just know strings. I haven’t mastered horns yet. You see, I can’t really read music. I’ve got an app on my phone that helps me. I know how it should sound, so I just put that in and then my dad has a program that converts it into an orchestra score. I’m trying to get an album out, but it’s taking a lot longer than I thought it would. When it’s finished, I’m going to sell it on iTunes.”

Torren is a good student with a particularly acute aptitude for history. “Ask me anything about history, and I probably know it,” Torren says with a confident shrug, “but that’s because I read history textbooks, really any history book I can get my hands on.”

Torren hopes to make a career out of his love for the past. “I’d like to go all the way through school and get my doctorate in history,” he says, obviously stirred by the prospect. “Eventually, I’d like to become a historian or a researcher.” A blink or two later, he adds, brows furrowed with sincerity, “Unless, of course, my album really takes off, then I might have to reconsider my career path.”

Right now, Torren’s plan is to finish high school and take advantage of everything that OBHC has to offer. “This is the second time I’ve lived here,” Torren explains. “The first time, I stayed for a year and a half and did really well, but when I went home again, I missed the routine, the structure, so I came back.”

After graduation, Torren hopes to move into transitional living and attend the University of Central Oklahoma. “I think that would be the best option for me if it works out,” says Torren, “because I could walk away from college with money instead of owing it.”

Torren considers it an added benefit that he would remain close to his houseparents, the Reynolds. “They are just really cool,” Torren says, his admiration for the couple clear. “I was raised to understand healthy relationships, so they don’t have to act as parents to me like they might some kids, but they have filled an important advisory role in my life. They’ve taught me a lot of practical things that I’ll take with me and helped me grow spiritually.”

Torren surrendered his life to Christ at Falls Creek in 2013. “It’s made a big difference,” Torren confesses. “Jesus has changed the way I feel and the way I act. The Reynolds gave me a really nice Bible, and I read it whenever I get the chance, usually at night.”

Content to stay the present course and grateful for the opportunity to do so, Torren is astounded by the generosity of those who support OBHC financially. “You don’t have to do what you do, but I am glad you do it!” Torren says, eyebrows raised. “You’ve given me calm away from the chaos of the city and room to think. You’ve given me the chance to see what I have in my family, and I’m thankful for that. So many kids have it worse than I do, and you are giving them mother and father figures they wouldn’t have had otherwise. That’s really cool to see.”

October 2016




For privacy and safety reasons, some residents' names and/or photos have been changed.

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