Awaken: College & Youth Trip to Austin, Texas
Our college students and youth spent a week in Austin, Texas ministering to, praying for and loving people! Not only were their lives personally impacted, they were also able to bless the lives of many people in Austin. They spent their mornings worshiping together and hearing powerful teachings and their afternoons reaching out to people in Austin. Below are some testimonies from the week: we hope you will read and be encouraged by what God is doing!
“When we got to UT, we decided to pray and ask God to highlight anyone specific that He wanted us to share with. My friend felt like God showed him a picture of a volleyball, and so we kept that in mind throughout the day. Later in the afternoon, I was walking back to the bus when I met a guy on campus and stopped to talk with him before leaving. I shared the gospel with him and as we continued to talk he told me he was on the volleyball team here at UT. I called my friend over who had felt God highlight a volleyball to him, and he got to share his testimony with and the guy, who then gave his life to Jesus!”
“As I was walking around the dining hall at UT, I saw an older woman who worked for the university sitting at a table by herself. I went over to her and asked if I could talk with her and she said yes, but added that she only had a few more minutes left on her break. After talking for a little while, I learned that she has a strong relationship with the Lord. When I asked her if there was anything I could pray with her for, she mentioned that she had really bad arthritis in her right knee that had been progressively worsening. She explained that it was causing her a lot of pain and she was concerned that eventually the pain would keep her from working, and leave her unable to financially support her family, including her daughter who was in college. I told her I believed Jesus could heal her knee of all pain, and in His name we prayed together for her knee to be healed. After we prayed, she stood up and slowly began to put more and more weight on her knee. She began to tear up and said that her knee felt completely fine and pain-free for the first time in years! She was healed!”
“We were in the the dining area and I saw a girl sitting by herself. I felt like God was telling me to go share the gospel with her and that she was prepared to say yes to Jesus. So, I walked over and asked if I could sit with her, and we began to talk. I shared my testimony and the Gospel with her and asked her if she possibly had a similar story. She replied yes and said that she went to church and believed in God but hadn’t ever felt like she had a relationship with Jesus, or given her life to Jesus. I asked her why she thought that was and she said “I have always wanted to but it’s never the right time. I’m always busy with school and don’t have time.” I shared with her she didn’t have to wait to have it all together to get to know Him and God was inviting her into that relationship now! She responded boldly, and prayed and asked Jesus to come into her life right there in the cafeteria!”
“Saturday morning in worship I felt like God began to show me a very specific description of someone I was supposed to meet and share with that day. When we arrived at Zilker Park, my friend and I began to look for someone who matched this dark, curly-haired description. As our time at the park was ending, I began to get discouraged that I had yet to find this person. As we were walking back to the group, we came across two women who were hula-hooping in the park and inviting others to join them. I made eye contact with one of the women and instantly felt like God said this was her! I then recognized her dark, ringlet hair just like the description God had given me earlier that morning. It turned out the only way we could talk to her was to join the hula hooping, and so we did! She began to talk to us about the spiritual practices of yoga that she believed in, and having recently lived in India, I happened to know a little about what she believed. I felt like God began to prompt me to tell her of the picture God had given me of her this morning, and as she listened she began to cry and said, ‘I believe that!’ We then got to pray with her and share about Jesus. As we were leaving, we gave her a Bible and she told us she believed there were many ways to God. We were able to be honest with her in that moment and share that Jesus is the only way. She looked surprised, and then thought for a minute and said, ‘you know what, Jesus has been knocking on the door of my heart since I was young.’ She then decided she wanted to open that door to Him and we got to pray with her as she gave her life to Jesus!”
“Last year during the Awaken trip, I met a Spanish man who couldn’t speak any English. I was frustrated with the little Spanish I knew, because I wanted to talk to him so badly. This fueled the desire I already had to learn the language, and over the past year I finally achieved a level of fluency! Going into Awaken this year, I prayed that I would have another chance to share the love of Jesus in Spanish. Today at church under the bridge, God provided that opportunity! A girl on our team sat down next to a man whose first words were “Sick. My leg’s sick”, and she shortly learned he couldn’t speak much more English than this. I saw this happen from afar, and ran over to ask the man if he spoke Spanish, and he did! I began speaking with the man in Spanish, and eventually asked if we could pray for his leg. We began to pray and ask God to bring healing to this man’s leg. After we prayed, the man began to bend his leg for the first time since we sat down, and then he proceeded to get up and start walking! He looked at us with a huge smile and said that his leg was pain free! He didn’t understand how that was possible and we got to explain to him that it was Jesus. He told us he had not been able to walk without pain for 3 years! We then got to invite him to have a relationship with Jesus and he said yes! (or Si in this case)!”
These are just a few of the many ways our students saw God move while in Austin. Overall, this trip brought about personal and physical healing, revealed more about the character of God, and motivated our students to move boldly to see their own campuses transformed for Jesus!