Danell headed home to Virginia after her spring session at In The Gap, praying, “God, what do You want me to do this summer?” An exciting possibility to serve on a mission trip was before her, but as she prayed about it, she sensed God calling her to serve Him in the mission field He had given her at home.
With that direction, she jumped into volunteering with a ministry that works with middle school and high school inner-city kids three times a week. Last year, the Lord used that very ministry to bring her to salvation, and it was thrilling to now be able to give back into others’ lives in the same way.
Pouring in tons of time and energy, Danell worked with the ministry to plan Bible Clubs that would be held in five rough neighborhoods. Imagine the impact that could be made! Full of vision and anticipation, she excitedly planned and prepared…until God suddenly revealed that this was not His right timing, and the door shut. She felt like a failure.
As God deepened her spiritual walk, she continued working with the inner-city kids every week. These kids had no vision beyond the life they see on the street every day – drugs, teen pregnancies, gangs, etc. Danell and the team took the kids hiking, horse-back riding, and other places, to expand their view of life, while at the same time living out Christ alongside them. Over and over, girls came to Danell with questions – thirsty for love. They could see a difference in her life from the “old Danell” they knew last summer. She told them about their worth and the importance of having morals because they are precious in God’s sight.
One boy, Marky, was from a broken family, sold drugs, and was facing a possible 7-year sentence in a juvenile detention center. Throughout the summer as the volunteers explained 2 Corinthians 5:17 and how God has the power to transform our lives completely, Danell began to see a change in Marky’s heart and mind as the truth began to take root. He finally softened to the point of yielding his whole situation and possible prison sentence to God, willing to go there if it would draw him closer to the Lord. Keep him in your prayers.
Looking back on her summer, Danell is amazed at how much better God’s plans were than hers! He taught her in a new way to see the need in every single person – child or adult. And if she will just yield herself to the Lord and His plans, He will use her to share His life-changing truth with them to make an eternal difference!
Click here to learn more about the training that In The Gap offers young adults, like Danell, to equip them in becoming effective mentors and communicators of truth.