by: David Davis
“For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.” Matthew 16:25
The Millennial generation is a unique generation. Having been born between 1980 and 2000 they have become the largest group in the work force. They grew up in an era of computers, videos and portable technologies. They encountered a world marked by political and religious scandal, rising divorce rates, unstable property values, escalating educational costs, fragile economies and political toxicity.
A great deal has been written about the millennial generation and their spirituality. A recently published Pew Research Study reveals that while the millennial generation is less religious, especially when it comes to church attendance, they consider themselves to be spiritual.
HOI is helping to shape the spirituality of this generation through our mission trips and continued engagement. Recently, I had an opportunity to sit down with Joshua Cohn. Joshua, a young architect by vocation, attends Buckhead Community Church. He is active in worship, small groups and helps mentor junior high students though the congregation’s youth ministry. While attending a singles event at his church, Joshua was invited to join a group of other young adults traveling to the Agalta Valley with HOI.
Joshua said yes to this invitation to step out in faith.
In anticipation of the trip, Joshua expected to have a positive impact on the people in Honduras. Like most of us, he was filled with gratitude for what has been entrusted to him and he welcomed an opportunity to give back. What Joshua did not expect, however, was how God would use the people of Honduras to have a profound impact upon his life.
Joshua shared, “While I was there, I came to realize that I am not in control — that I have to trust God and allow God to be in control.” He also shared that he saw God’s wisdom and presence emerging in the people who traveled with him. “Everyone had gifts and talents to contribute.” Most of all, as Joshua reflected upon the trip, he shared, “I know that I am called to enrich my life by serving others in the name of Christ.”
God has filled HOI with an incredible vision. You and I are a part of a community that transforms lives through faith and works. Children are learning and growing. Young people are coming to faith in Christ. Families are receiving health care and education. Communities are finding dignity through partnerships in economic and community development. Equally important, God is using the ministry of HOI to shape the spiritual life of people traveling to Honduras and Nicaragua. They are encountering a God who has called them, gifted them and challenged them to be a part of HIS redemptive work in the world. In doing so they are experiencing a more vibrant faith and a deeper commitment to Christ and a renewed sense of service in their local church. In part that is why HOI exists – to change the lives of North Americans by giving them an opportunity to lose their life in service to God and experience the power of God in that surrender.
This upcoming year, all of us at HOI hope you will pray weekly for the groups traveling to Honduras. We ask that you pray for their safety and protection. We also ask that you pray that God would continue to call them, equip them and deepen their faith in Christ, and that they would return from their time of service with a renewed commitment to share their faith and declare the presence of a living savior.