AYC 2019 Testimonies – Lacy Young
On July 7th 2018, I was at a crossroad in my life. This was potentially the last church service I was going to go to. I was in such a dark place in my mind. I felt so confused, lonely, and forgotten by God. I couldn’t see the direction that God wanted me to go. I made up my mind that I would go to the Hyphen retreat at the Ohio UPCI campgrounds and if nothing changed for me, I was done with church. That Friday night, the message brought by Sis. Kendra Shock shook me up. She mentioned missions multiple times.
As she spoke about her experiences, that familiar drawing that I had felt ever since I was a little girl began to stir in my soul. I shook it off again thinking, “God doesn’t want me to go. I’m a confused nobody who’s life is a mess. He wouldn’t use someone like me”.
The following morning’s service was dynamite. Again, she spoke about answering the call to go. When the altar call opened, I went. I buried my face into the stairs. I wept with tears that had been pent up for what felt like years. I remember saying, “God you have to help me, I can’t keep going this way. I’m not going to leave this spot until you speak to me.” I was desperate. God knew that. As I was sobbing, someone put her hand on my back and whispered in my ear, “ You have been running from it for years, but the time is NOW.” Instantly God spoke to my spirit and said, “Across the Ocean.”
It may be cliche, but my whole life flashed before my eyes. I saw all the times throughout my life that God pulled my heart towards missions. Each one so clear but yet, I was so clouded by my own idea that God wouldn’t use someone like me, so much so that I just couldn’t see the calling on my life.
God wanted me to go.
After talking with my Pastor and Pastor’s wife, they were in agreement with that direction for my life. They told me to proceed with attending a missions trip.
The first thing I did was get on the Apostolic Youth Corps web page. I checked out the list for the 2019 destinations. After prayer and fasting, I made the decision to attend the AYC trip to Benelux (Belgium, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg).
On July 7th, 2019, exactly one year later that God called me, I was standing in Europe. I crossed the ocean. When I say that my life changed during that trip, I’m not being dramatic. It was like my whole life had led up to that moment. The people who attended this trip truly witnessed God working. From tongues and interpretation at the first night’s orientation to witnessing two receive the Holy Ghost at our last service.
God revealed His heart to us. As I walked through the streets, tears would drip down my face as I felt His love for those people. I can still see some of their faces. The burden from God was so tangible. Without AYC, I would have never experienced that for myself. A group of 39 strangers became a family. We outreached together, prayed together, worshipped together, and we spread the word of Jesus together. It was this trip that confirmed my call to the mission field. I received my call to preach the Word of God on this trip. I found where God wanted me to go. I received the “Most Likely to be an AIMer” award while on this trip God called me to be on and if everything goes as planned, I will be AIMing to Belgium next year.
The chaperones, Sis. Seneatha Clayton, Bro. Wesley Stephens and Sis Lindsey Stephens will never know the impact that they had on my life. In ten short days, they helped me grow and walk into the calling that I never even knew existed. Their love for God and for the young people of this world is strong and true. They are the real deal. I am honored to know them.
If you are reading this and have felt any sort of a desire to attend an AYC trip, I recommend that you do. Even if you don’t feel called to the foreign mission field, everyone should experience something like this at least once in their lives. I promise you, the impact that it leaves on you will stay with you for the rest of your life. If you are reading this and you are feeling the way that I did, that God wouldn’t use someone like you, just remember this- “God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called.”
He just wants the empty willing vessel. Send me, Lord. I’ll Go.