It felt like home. I wasn’t greeted like I was just someone’s friend at the time. I was welcomed with hugs, jokes, and conversations as if we already knew each other. They wanted to know me, know who I was, and not just what name to write on the name tag. My friends at the EPIC high school ministry at New Hope Leeward became my sisters and brothers in Christ. Before I left for college my pastor told me that the Christian walk is going to be the most challenging journey to experience. I didn’t fully understand what he meant by that, but it is a little more clear to me now.

It’s easier to feel God’s love and presence  when you’re surrounded by a community of faith that supports you. The real challenge for me during this journey was to still feel God’s presence when I’m alone in the stillness. No worship band. No one to hug me and tell me that it’s going to be okay. Just me and my faith.
Faith that He has my best interest at heart.
Faith that He has it already taken care of.
Faith that continues to serve.

Look around with fresh eyes and an open heart and really see people. See them not as threats or problems or inconveniences but as children of God to serve. Pray to see people and before even wondering what they could do for you, you find yourself dreaming up ways to bless them. Do what it takes to help those around you.
– Nicole Reyes




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