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Army Family’s Hard Choice: Groceries or Paying Bills?

Right outside Fort Bragg North Carolina, you’ll find E-4 army soldier Jesse spending time with his wife Melissa and their four children. Melissa is grateful that Jesse makes family time a priority.

Melissa says, “I’m proud of him. And I feel like, you know, he provides for our family and he’s serving our country.  So, he’s happy and I’m happy.”

Jesse feels Melissa’s job taking care of the kids is just as critical.

Jesse says, “I almost feel like she has a harder job, to be honest with you. Just having the mental strength like she does is incredible.”

When they got married, Melissa had finished college and intended to work to add to the family income. Their priorities changed as their family grew to six, and Melissa started homeschooling instead of perusing a career. Through the years, Jesse’s income alone couldn’t keep up. Eventually, they were way behind on Melissa’s student loan payments.

Jesse says, “It feels like a heavy burden, like it would take forever to pay it off basically. It just got to the point where we either have to eat or pay off student loans.”

To add to their money problems, they learned their family van required costly repairs at the same time they needed to buy beds for the twins who’d outgrown their toddler beds. They’d have to put the expenses on a credit card. Through it all, the couple trusted that God would take care of them.  

Melissa says, “God has done so many miracles in my life that there’s no way that in some way this isn’t going to work out.”

Their situation took a huge turn when their church, River House, contacted CBN’s Helping the Home Front. Pastor Stacy Long invited the couple over to tell them CBN was going to pay for the van repairs and buy beds for the twins.

Pastor Stacy asks, “Do you think the girls will be excited?  

Melissa answers, “Yea! They will be excited.”  

And there was another surprise.

“Another thing that Helping the Home Front wants to do is they’re going to pay off your student loan so it goes away. What do you guys think?”

Melissa answers, “That’s amazing. That’s amazing. I think I’m a little bit in shock. I don’t know what to think. I don’t even know what to say but I’m thankful.”

CBN arranged to fix the van, and then took them shopping to pick out beds for the twins. Now that Melissa’s student loans are paid in full, the family can finally get ahead.

Melissa concludes, “God has come through for our family and myself today. I’ve just — I’ve been praying for a long time that somehow, someway, that God would come through for us. And he has today with CBN.”

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