Student Testimonies

AVAI Was “On Fire for God”—He Changed My Life From the Inside Out 

by Ava Carroll

I gave my life to Christ in the summer of 2016 at a girls’ camp. I was “on fire for God.” God changed my life from the inside out. After I got saved, it felt like life changed. Not only did I have the desire to serve, but I also had the desire to learn.

I first started serving in my children's ministry. Soon after, I was introduced to the L.I.T. mission trip for our 5th and 6th graders.

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hannah lehew“L.I.T Has Impacted My Life By Showing Me The Importance of a Daily Quiet Time. Hannah Lehew
 Before I was in L.I.T., I didn't really have the discipline to read my Bible every day and to memorize verses. Having a spiritual influence to keep me accountable every week made a huge difference in my walk with the Lord. Through L.I.T., God taught me how to have a quiet time and listen to Him. Without having that discipleship at an early age, I doubt that I would have a strong root in my relationship with Christ through my teenage years.

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Picture4 I Am Not Ashamed That I Am a Christian by Caitlyn Conover

Being a part of the L.I.T. program has been the highlight of my year since I first started. I began L.I.T. when I was in 5th grade. I am currently in 12th grade, and I am still involved.

It teaches lots of things that stick with you through hands-on experience and serving in different roles. Because of this, my eyes have been opened to how I can help at home and in the communities around me.

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Madison2The Spirit of God Fell Upon Me by Madison Lowrie
 
L.I.T. is more than just a single chapter of my story; the ministry’s impact is woven into the very tapestry of my entire life. The tagline of the ministry “empowering the next generation” is more than just a saying; it is a lifestyle, intertwined into the very DNA of all that is involved in the program. The founders believe and implement the truth that there is no such thing as a “junior” Holy Spirit, and because of that call-to-action and their passion for His kingdom to come to Earth, my life has forever been changed. My salvation story began at an early age and was followed by water baptism shortly thereafter.

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Sarah Teaching2Age Is Not a Prerequisite to Serve God by Sarah Gonzalez

The first time I went on a mission trip with leaders in training, I was seven years old. Even though I was the youngest child there, I quickly learned that age is not a prerequisite to serve God. That week, I saw God move firsthand in many powerful ways.

Over the years, I attended seven mission trips; however, I still remember the first time I gave the Gospel presentation. I was nervous, tired, and did not feel prepared to teach in front of a crowd. Before I started, my leader prayed for me, and at that moment the Holy Spirit took control. I don't remember what I said, but I remember feeling that God was using me to do His work and to glorify Him.

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Alex Burnett

My Path Was Set For Life Alex Burnett, (L.I.T. 2004-2005)

Church attendance was part of being in my family. On Wednesdays, we would go to whatever age-appropriate ministry was being put on. It was in L.I.T. where I learned what it meant to take the gifts and talents God had given and use them for the sake of sharing the Gospel and sharing the opportunity of life following after Jesus. I felt as though I was part of something—a team of people committed to each other and something of purpose. The leaders cared for us as kids, as Christian brothers and sisters, and as individuals with troubles never too trivial to attend to and worries worth their time.

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BreanneSpiritual Maturity at a Young Age by Breanne Morgan Galey (L.I.T. 2009-2010)

Throughout my two years in L.I.T. (and the many years of returning to serve as a leader that followed), I learned in depth what utilizing my talents in ministry looked like, how to share the Gospel personally and effectively, how to pray, how to study Scripture, and how to overall orient my life towards the scriptural teachings, disciplines, and callings God has for Christians. I was learning how to fall into the rhythm of a relationship with God (a big deal for a 12-year-old!).

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madison miller cropped

 I Had a Fire in My Heart by Madison Miller (L.I.T. 2008-2010)

When I was in 5th grade, I started Leaders In Training. During that time, I learned how to make my faith my own and share it with others. On my first L.I.T. mission trip, God used me to lead a girl my age to Christ. From that moment on, I had a fire in my heart for sharing my faith and ministering to the kids around me.

From 5th grade to now, I have had the opportunity to invest in and disciple children. I started off by teaching a Sunday school class when I was in 6th grade. I was a Children’s Intern in college. Now, I work as part of a kids’ ministry. 

 

 

 

 

 

Holland

 

L.I.T. Taught Me to Be a Leader

When I was old enough to join L.I.T., I jumped at the opportunity to do for others what had been done for me. Looking back, the most amazing thing I learned was a degree of ownership that many adults think kids are not ready for. Although we were supervised, when it was time for a Kids Jam (Children's Worship) or Kids Blitz (community outreach), we were responsible for everything. That included transporting our equipment, managing the stage, setting up and tearing down the auditorium, leading worship, all the various performances, teaching, and the invitation. This taught me a great deal about leadership, taking the initiative, and working with others to accomplish something.

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Zoe Brown
 
L.I.T. Shaped Me Into the Person I Am Today
 
I started L.I.T. when I was in fourth grade, and it shaped me into the person I am today. When I became “too old” to participate in L.I.T., I started to disciple two young girls, and I was able to watch them grow in their faith. L.I.T. showed me not only the importance of a daily walk with Christ but also the importance of discipleship.

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L.I.T. Helped Me Fully Understand the Seriousness of Sharing my Faith

   
From the teachings of L.I.T., I have learned what it means to step up and be a leader. This gained character trait has not only aided me in the mission field but also in my relationships with the people around me. L.I.T. taught me the importance of having a daily quiet time, or time spent reading and listening to God’s Word.

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Sarah Owens Final Pic
 

Jesus came alive for me during my journey through L.I.T

  
"Jesus came alive for me during my journey through L.I.T as a young girl. He was no longer a nice idea or a story, but a Father, a friend, and the safest place I have ever come to know. I am endlessly thankful for the opportunities I was given to not only experience God at work first hand but to engage in that work with Him at such a young age.

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Sarah Owens Final Pic
 

L.I.T. Shaped My Spiritual Life Tremendously!

  
As a young girl, L.I.T. shaped my spiritual life tremendously! The key components were identity, leadership, and discipleship. I was taught my identity as a daughter and co-heir of Christ, and this life-transforming truth has made me the woman I am today. Through discipleship, I learned what it meant to live a life of integrity while following Jesus.

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Sarah Owens Final Pic
 

L.I.T. Played a Significant Role in My Spiritual Life-Pastor Joel Hayworth

  
Two things specifically that are a part of L.I.T. that have played significant roles in my spiritual formation are forming spiritual disciplines and using spiritual gifts in the local church. As a young believer, I was given a weekly Scripture verse to memorize and a daily passage to read.

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hannah lehewNo Longer a Slave to Fear, Valeria, Piedras Negras, Mexico
Valeria has always been shy and introverted. She first came to know Jesus at a library ministry outreach when she was 7 years old. She told us plainly that she knew God wanted her to be a missionary. She began L.I.T. discipleship, wanting to grow in her faith to share Jesus with her parents. At library outreach every day for 5 years, Valeria would ask for prayer for her parents to know Jesus. One day, she invited her parents to attend a ministry outreach, where her parents finally accepted Jesus. As Valeria grew up, she struggled with expressing herself and often felt frustrated. When she turned 15, she accepted an invitation to co-mentor younger girls.

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noahlehew
“L.I.T. Has Made My Relationship With God Deeper. Noah Lehew, Sapulpa, Oklahoma
I was required to spend time with the Lord each day, and at first, I didn't understand why. But eventually, God started revealing His Word to me and showing me how to apply it. I struggled with many things, including anger, but being held accountable through L.I.T. in a quiet time has allowed me to grow deeper and control my actions.

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