As with most relationships with Christ, mine has not always been the strongest. I used to be really into myself and my own personal desires. As I fell into this trap of being consumed with myself, I saw my grades slip, good friendships decline, and my lack of love for service.

Even though I was not where I should have been with the Lord, somehow, I was still known as the “good Christian” girl. My reputation was as a “goody-goody”, which I realize now was not a good thing because my friends assumed that is how a real Christian acts.

My Grandparents and parents were and still are highly involved in the ministry of Child Evangelism Fellowship, and they wanted me to be, too, but I wanted no part of that. They finally convinced me to do summer ministry with CEF and when I did, as I like to say, God hit me upside the head.

He showed me how wrong my actions and thoughts had been, how damaging they were to myself and others, and how I was not being a good example of Christ to my peers. It was a moment of true conviction for me because I saw how I had been and could now feel how free it felt to leave those things behind, and I did.

God called me to the ministry through CEF and to serve children because that is where I can use my God given talents. Here, where God has called me, I feel more joy and more of a purpose in life than I had ever felt before. He has given me opportunity after opportunity to serve others and be a Christian leader to them in my school, at church, and through every place I have gotten to visit during my summers working in Child Evangelism Fellowship’s 5-day clubs.

God called me to the ministry through CEF

I no longer find my identity in the ever-changing things in society, but in Christ, who never changes and is always perfect. This past summer has been my favorite because God allowed me to have an internship with this incredible organization, and not only be a leader to the children, but also to the teenagers who are doing what I started doing 5 years earlier.

I was talking to a friend of mine that had a similar experience in his relationship with the Lord, and we could both truly agree on this concept. Every Christian needs to have a serious moment of conviction from God for their faith to really take shape. I know God has an incredible plan for my life that I have to trust Him for, and I am so excited to see what He has in store.

Erin Mannix, CEF Tidewater Chapter