Opportunities that transform. If I could form these each week for students I would. Most opportunities for transformation come with getting students out of their daily routine; requiring them to switch from an instantaneous world of being plugged in and to plug in to something else…. Where the Spirit is at work in their lives. Over the year I count it a real blessing to be able to walk beside these students through these opportunities that transformed their lives. Hopefully for an eternity and not just the time that they were there. Some of these opportunities are for a day, a weekend, a week or a semester. As I reflect on the year, I am grateful for all of them!
Transformation is an end goal of all ministry and one context allows for exponential growth in a short period of time – taking someone out of their comfort zone to experience culture and God’s love for His people on a deeper level. Andrew DiDonato, head football coach at GCC, had this vision for his team to reach beyond campus and we pursued a trip to the Envision Atlanta site in Clarkston, Georgia. Our experience extended past the physical labor and relational ministry among the refugee populations in that area. We were challenged to see, experience and respond to people who were different from us and hungry for the truth of the gospel. As we shared the love of Jesus with 40 different people groups, eyes and hearts grew to understand more Christ’s vision for His church. The prayer is that short term trips would develop into a long-term mentality of living a life led by the Spirit and equip the church to reach our neighbors both near and far. As I listened to one student process his experience with me of how this week challenged his faith on a deeper level, I am drawn to the truth that God wants to draw us each into this relationship with Him.
Taking students back to my Guatemalan home always is a prime are for transformation. They see life through different eyes and I can pour into them individually during this time. Something I have had a passion for is networking with students here that want to pursue the opportunity for missions in the health field. Since I have such a strong connection to a place that incorporates Jesus into all they do, I want them to also have this experience. The cry is my heart is that they would see and hear clearly the call on each of their hearts and walk confidently into that.