I met Sarah* halfway through her senior year last spring. Her friend visited Campus Life, heard about the Spring Break trip, and wanted them both to go. Sarah started coming to Campus Life because she thought she had to in order to go to Florida with us. After one visit, she was hooked. She loved the energy, the games, and the friends that she made.
When the Spring Break trip rolled around, I was excited to hear more of Sarah's story. She loved small group time but did not want to open up about herself. Despite our best efforts, Sarah remained closed off throughout the trip. I left Spring Break feeling like my chance to know Sarah was gone since she was graduating and could not go to YFC Camp that summer. Then another opportunity came up – a Project Serve trip at a different camp. As a last resort, I took Sarah and her friend who invited her to Campus Life to Colorado to serve on the Project Serve team. A whole week with just the three of us, I was certain that Sarah would have to open up and talk to me. I was wrong. She opened up a little more, asked some tough questions about God, but for the most part, she didn’t share much. She was going to college and I was nervous that our relationship was coming to an end.
Sarah's time at Campus Life was coming to a close, but that was not the end of her story. God had a different plan for Sarah. Fast forward one year to this summer, Sarah joined us for a small group discussion and was the most open and vulnerable person in the group. She opened up about her home life, the questions that she struggles with, and how she wants to know God deeper and better. Over the past year, God transformed this closed off, agnostic, hurting girl into a vulnerable, passionate Christ follower. She is now volunteering with the Valparaiso Middle School Campus Life and asking us questions about what she read that morning in the Bible. I thought that I had limited time to get to know her and share the Gospel with her, but God’s timing is so much sweeter than my own. He transformed her through His relationship with her on His own time.
Emily Barnes, Campus Life Director
*Name has been changed