“If he’s calling me, that’s it. End of discussion.”
August 4, 2015
As the seatbelt sign turned off, Rachel stood up to deplane following her long flight from Dallas to Atlanta. Like many others, the two guys behind her turned on their cellphones to catch up on missed calls. That’s when she overheard one of them respond to the person on the other end of the line.
“Yeah, I’m at Passion this weekend!”
While trying not to eavesdrop, Rachel couldn’t help but turn to them in excitement.
“I’m going to Passion too!”
Having completing grad school at the University of Central Arkansas last year, this was likely her last chance to attend the conference. Like so many college graduates, she was trying to figure out what would come next in life.
“I was in a transitional phase and I was looking for God to show up in a big way,” Rachel remembers.
Unknown to her, God had just done it. The two guys, Josh and Tommy, were members of e3’s MECA (Middle East/Central Asia) team. They were part of a larger group of staff in attendance thanks to a special partnership between Passion and e3 Partners.
In January, over 50,000 college students gathered between three Passion Conferences in Atlanta and Houston. Louie Giglio, John Piper, Francis Chan, Ben Stuart, and Matt Chandler preached the Gospel with relentless ambition while artists like Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin, and David Crowder led students in a powerful weekend of worship.
In 2015, Passion and e3 Partners teamed up with the unique goal of engaging ten unreached and unengaged people groups. Between three separate events, students were challenged to give $850,000 towards e3’s efforts. At the close of the final conference in Houston, over $1.2 million had come in, adding four new people groups to the list. While thousands of students gave, some took the call even farther. They chose to go.
Rachel had already been learning about the plight of unreached people groups for years. She loved missions but didn’t know how or where to get involved. After seeing the overwhelming response by her peers at the conference, she knew it was time to go. She joined one of several short-term mission teams going into the Middle East. They backpacked through deserts, ministered to Bedouin tribes, trained and encouraged local Christians, and shared the love of Christ with an Adyghe newlywed couple. After years of studying, Rachel was standing face to face with cultures lacking any missionary presence or Christian community.
“Each morning, we would come back from lunch and just share stories of what God did. It was overwhelming to see God at work. Nothing is too hard for him. His purposes will stand.”
Now home, Rachel has begun seeking other opportunities to serve the 10 million people still unreached here in the United States. Her faith has been strengthened from the experience as her team continues to touch base and encourage one another.
“Jesus is worth it. If he is calling me, that’s it. End of discussion.”
Click here to learn more and join others engaging the unreached around the globe.