Summer Missionary 2023

Faith Raymond

Where do you currently attend school? Williams Baptist University in Walnut Ridge, AR
Where are you serving this summer, and who is your mentor?
Black River Baptist Association with Paul Reams
How did you first encounter Jesus Christ, and how has His lordship continued to change your life?
It’s hard to describe my initial encounter with Jesus, because as far back as I can remember I’ve always felt Him with me through some pretty hard times. However, at the age of 7, I asked Jesus to truly be apart of my life and I was saved. I remember feeling like Jesus had always been close, but after that He was finally in front of me. Jesus has seen me through some challenging things in my life, and I am stronger and closer to Him because of it. I would be a biter and angry person without Jesus. He gives my life a calm in times of great distress. He continues to show Himself in my life everyday. The little things He’s done have proven to be just as life changing as the big. My life would be so different if it wasn’t for Jesus. He continues to bless my life, and I feel like my life is ever changing because of Him.
What does the church mean to you?
I’ve attended the same church with my grandmother since before I can remember. My grandmother has always told us of the many many people in our church that spent hours upon hours praying for us that God’s plan be done in our lives when my Grandmother was going to court for my sister and me. They proved to not only be huge prayer warriors for my sister and me but also a sold, reliable force for my grandmother during that time. They have always been like family and to me that’s what church should be. Fellow believers coming together not only to hear the word of God but to be God’s hands and feet for their brothers and sisters in Christ. To me church is the ultimate outstretched hand of God.
As a student, how have you shared – and are currently sharing – your faith with others?
To me sharing my faith isn’t something you do with just words but with action as well. When it comes to school, sports, or just talking to friends I’d like to think I show my faith through how I act and how I speak, and if the opportunity arises for me to give the credit to the lord I do my best. I’m not perfect and I slip up but I believe the best way to reach people is to be a good person and let others see Jesus in you.ť
What do you feel is your vocational call (future career), and how do you anticipate sharing your faith through that call?
I don’t yet know where God is leading me for a future vocation, but I pray he opens my eyes to that very soon. Wherever God leads me I pray that I never lose sight of why I was out on this earth and that I can minister to others through whatever career path I’m meant to pursue.
Why do you want to be a summer missionary?
This last semester with my college volleyball team, I helped pass out food boxes to people in the nearby communities with the local Southern Baptist church. I got the opportunity to not only help people but to listen to them and pray with them. This filled me with so much joy despite in the beginning not really being to excited about talking to strangers. God opened my eyes and heart to the joy of helping others while sharing of who he is. This experience made me realize how badly I wanted to do something with missions. When Mr. Paul Reams had talked to me about this summer program, at first I was a little hesitant, but after that experience I know that God can use me if I step out of my comfort zone. I pray that is summer program will give me a glimpse of what missions is truly about and be a stepping stone for me in my missions journey.