“I don’t know why you bother with me.”

That’s what the inner-city, troubled gang member said to a teacher who was working to keep him in school.

I heard this story a few days ago. At 14, the boy fit all the stereotypes of a kid who would grow up to be a drug user and criminal, lucky if he wasn’t dead by the age of 21. He had no hope for a successful future.

But the teacher did not give up. She saw him as a precious child loved by God, and she showed him the love of Jesus by not giving up on him.

Today, this man pastors a church in his old neighborhood, sharing Jesus with others who feel hopeless and stuck.

A demon-possessed man once asked Jesus a similar question: “Why are you bothering me now, Jesus?” (Mark 5:7, GW). Jesus answered him by ordering the demons to come out of the man, sending them into a herd of pigs that ran off a cliff into the sea and drowned. The man was transformed and begged to go with Jesus. But Jesus told him, “Go home to your family, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been to you” (Mark 5:19, GW).

Both these men seemed to have no future, but after Jesus changed their lives, they eagerly shared their experiences with their families, friends, and anyone who would listen.

Have you wondered why anyone–especially God–would bother with you? Jesus cares. (See 1 Peter 5:7.)

Will you meet someone who feels hopeless today? “Tell them how much the Lord has done for you.”

Your story may help to change a life.