Originally Posted at BGAV.org. Article by Mallory Wohlford.
In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” –Matthew 5:16
During my time as a summer Venturer, I had so many opportunities to grow in my faith by serving others and to grow closer to God in my quiet times.
At the beginning of the summer, I started reading a book called Goliath Must Fall by Louie Giglio. In the book, he talks about how the giants in our lives must fall. I had heard this story a million times, but never quite like he told it. He talked about how Jesus died on the cross and saved us by taking down our giants, so this means our giants are already dead.
This completely changed my thought process because I did not need to be praying for God to help me take down my giants. He had already done it for me. After I made this realization, I wondered why I was letting these giants in my life have a grasp on me when they are already dead.
I started praying for God to help me remember, whenever those giants started sneaking into my life, that God had already defeated them. So what does this mean? For me, it meant I had to hand everything over to God. I had to hand over my lack of confidence, my fear of what people think of me, and all the other negative thoughts the devil kept throwing at me to make me feel inadequate.
God placed me in the exact place I needed to be to accomplish so much, because God knew I could do it all with his help. Through this, I was able to let my light shine and give the glory to God in everything I experienced.
Being in Texas, I was given plenty of time to grow closer to the youth group and to try to impact their lives in the best way I could. I also got the opportunity to grow some great friendships with these students.
I had the opportunity to help the Impact mission camp groups by ordering all the supplies, getting all the details in order, and being the go-to person to answer questions or to get whatever the groups needed while they were there.
The Impact groups not only worked on homes but also got to build relationships with some families in the community. They went to a local apartment complex and neighborhood to provide games and meals and to make friendships with the children.
The Impact groups were here during my last week in Texas, which was awesome because I got to see how all the ideas I helped plan and prepare for were fulfilled. It was also an amazing feeling to be able to see different youth from my home state of Virginia coming together to work in this community that now feels like my second home.
Leaving Liberty, Texas, was one of the most difficult things I’ve had to do because of how special this place has become to me. The people of First Baptist Church Liberty impacted my life so much, and they have definitely made me want to return. As Pastor Steve said, “Wherever you do missions, you leave a part of your heart.” The best part of leaving was knowing one day I’ll come back and visit this church family, and I hope it is very soon.
Mallory Wohlford, a student at Virginia Tech, served during summer 2018 as a BGAV Venturer. To learn more about serving as a Venturer, click here.