S.T. has just come off a year in Family Peace Association’s leadership training program. Her summer expereince as a workshop assistant director helped connect the lessons she gained during her training program and leading a purpose driven life everyday – in school, at home, at work and in her family, God’s heart towards humanity translates everywhere, all the time.
My testimony begins from the time before the summer workshops even started. I was just returning from Family Peace Association’s youth leadership program (Leadership Task Force) a couple of months ago and after that, although I contemplated and thought about what I wanted to do after I got home to continue a God-centered life, I couldn’t find any answers.
But I knew that I wanted to work with and for God in his providence, so what I knew I could do was to continue a disciplined lifestyle and engage in local projects. I was given the opportunity to help with the many providential projects and programs that promoted a culture of service, advocated for basic human rights, and contributed to peacebuilding processes around the world. Although these projects helped with God’s providence, I didn’t feel fulfilled that it was my life calling. I felt restless. I did not know what I wanted to do for God. All I knew was that I wanted to do something for God.
I continued to seek and worry about what I should do for my future. All these projects weren’t long-term for me. It wasn’t like I was going to do that for my entire life and I was thinking to myself, I have to go through college, I can’t miss another year, I need a job, I need to help my family financially, and all these thoughts were coming to me. But I concluded that those things don’t really matter right now, because I don’t know what I want to promise in my life for God yet. Until I solidify that quest for my future, I do not want to spread myself thin pursuing things that might be but are not yet my passion to fulfill that promise and mission for God.
It was at that exact time that I was given an opportunity to staff for these FPA workshops. Specifically, I become the assistant director. I was a little taken aback and felt unqualified. I didn’t know why but I knew that I needed to accept this opportunity.
Throughout the preparations for the workshops as well as during the programs, although crazy and intense, I continued to invest in my quest for answers about my future as well as cultivating the heart to want to help the participants touch God’s heart. This led to my first breakthrough which happened during the High School workshop. There was something that the staff was often saying amongst ourselves: that we should be learning even more than the participants and that we are all students of God and I truly experienced that during the workshops. The content taught during the program were topics I had been taught and heard about since I could remember, but I was learning new things every day and one of the sessions had triggered my breakthrough.
It was a session that presented a video about the life course of a man who sacrificed everything for God. Even though I watched that video so many times, I could not help but cry. The desperation I saw in him to connect to God’s heart was also reflecting God’s own desperation for us. It made me reflect on my whole life and my quest to seek my purpose and it all became clear to me. I want to reflect that desperate heart of God. That life of attendance and devotion to God and his dream, I too should live.
Everything clicked and so many emotions of sorrow, realization, relief, and determination came crashing down on me in the form of tears. Based on that breakthrough, I also realized that it is not about me. My position as assistant director, my feeling of being unqualified—sure, I might be unqualified, but that is not important. God needs somebody so desperately to work through so He can convey that heart. And I just happened to be there, and I happened to be that person that God can do that. That moment of humility and gratitude allowed me to realize that. I finally experienced a moment of a true sense of responsibility and identity through that breakthrough that then defined and pushed the rest of my workshop experience. Because after that, the many opportunities and experiences God gave me throughout the workshop period led to realizations, lessons, and breakthroughs. All that was another step to deepen and understand more of God’s heart, more of that sense of responsibility for my future and life to solidify that determination and promise to God to live a life of passion with God in pursuit to fulfill His dream in whatever form that may be.