Although I was very excited to join OM Lifehope in the UK for a year, I was scared at the same time. It was hard for me to leave home, but I felt God's peace in the decision. The giant step of faith was completely worth it.
It would take more time and space than this article would allow to express how God changed and stretched me during my year in the UK. I came from a small town and it was my first time living away from home for more than two weeks. I had little experience and knowledge in ministry, evangelism and interacting with other cultures.
My year in the UK began with an initial training period and had training times interspersed throughout the rest of the year that equipped me to share my faith and serve God alongside a team of international students. Our team worked with a church just inside Wales, doing things like children's and youth clubs, door-to-door work, and speaking in schools.
Many of the things we did, especially public speaking, were way outside of my comfort zone. God challenged me to trust him with everything, especially because I was away from home and all I had ever known. I began to see things from a Christ-centered global perspective through being introduced to people from all around the world. The Church was so much bigger than I had thought!
In these ways, and many others, God prepared me for what was ahead. That year of incredible faith stretching gave me opportunities that I would not have had at home and showed me that God was faithful and trustworthy. I have kept in touch with a number of friends that I met in the UK, which has been a real encouragement to me. Even though I have had many struggles since I have been back in Canada, I can look back on my experience and see how God worked, which gives me hope for what he can do in and through me now.
During the year I spent in the UK, God began to give me a heart for youth ministry. I saw a great need in Europe because many youth do not see Christianity as relevant to their lives. God gave me a love for them and a desire to spend my life serving them. When I came back to Canada from the UK, I applied to Providence College to join their Youth Leadership Major program. I am currently finishing my second year of studies and will graduate next April (2010) with a B.A. in Youth Leadership. I am excited to go back to Europe with OM to use both my previous OM experience and college education to share the Good News with youth.
Do you want to be a part of God's story like Tami was? Then let's go!
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