gradual change

It was at around age 16 that I stopped going to church… I remember becoming obsessed with myself and what I thought of as “special knowledge,” while still calling myself a Christ follower. I was bitter, rebellious, and deceitful with waves of deep depression. My parents echoed the lament of many Christian parents, “What did we do wrong? Why, God, would you let my child walk away from You?” It took time, but God broke through the darkness and started to change who I was.
In my life, change has always been gradual. I remember wishing God would transform me overnight, but those big changes never happened. Over the years, I can see His hand in my life, guiding me towards Him through hardship, repentance, and many, many blessings. As God slowly changed my heart, I joined a wonderful church, made friends that poured into me and got me involved in service. Instead of loving myself, I developed a love for God and His Word because now I wanted to be in relationship with Him. I became a Sunday School teacher for teens, a pastorate intern, and now God has opened doors for me to be the Phoenix/Talent Area Director for Youth 71Five Ministries.
God has led me out of my darkness into the hope of the Gospel countless times. Now, I want to share that same transforming hope with the youth of Phoenix and Talent who are on the same dark path. Thank you for providing a safe and healthy place for young people to discover the hope that only Christ can bring. – CAMERON HOEHNE, 71Five Campus Area Director – Phoenix/Talent