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Giving It to God
Elizabeth ‘Libby’ Jones ~ CB I ‘15b, CB II ‘16, SM ‘17,
CB III ‘17, CB IV ‘18 ~ Children’s Ministries - IN
As I sat in the wooden pew listening to the preacher, my mind kept drifting back to the words he had said just
moments before: “You can’t tell me if you listen to worldly music that you love God.” I played those words over and
over in my head. I do not know if that is true for others, but I knew in my heart that was true for me. When I went
to the altar that night, I had no idea that this was just the beginning.
It was soon after that night that I attended CAMP BIMI II in 2016. God encouraged me to take my decision a step
further. The theme of the week was “Cutting the ties that were holding us back from serving God.” I thought I
had done that with the music, but as I sat listening to Bro. Baughman preach, something began weighing down my
heart. I began searching my heart and mind for the things Bro. B. had suggested. My family and friends all loved
and supported me. I had no fears or reservations about going to the field or serving God. Why was I so convicted?
Later that evening, I spoke to Mrs. B. As I told her about the decision I had made weeks before, I spoke a name that I had not even thought
of until that moment— the name of a longtime acquaintance. Suddenly I knew that was the final thing holding me back. Not the same
Christian I had grown up with, over several years that acquaintance had changed and had become a negative influence in my life. Mrs.
B. said something I’ll never forget: “Recovering alcoholics do not hang out at bars with people who drink.” She was right. I was a
recovering addict, only my addiction was not alcohol. It was worldly music! I knew what I had to do, but it broke my heart. Mrs. B.
and I knelt at the altar, and I poured out my heart to God. I knew if I was going to do what He was laying on my heart, then I was going
to need His strength to do it.
Soon after, I walked away from that longtime friend and worldly music. It was not easy, but I knew God had to come first. I learned that
sometimes the thing holding us back is not necessarily sin. Sometimes it is an influence that you cannot imagine your life without.
God loves me infinitely more than anyone on this earth could love me, and I owe Him my whole life. I’m excited to see where He is going
to send me to serve Him!
When God’s Will Wasn’t Mine
Michelle (Little) Burton ~ CB I ‘11a, CB II ‘13, CB III ‘14
~ Children’s Church Pastor’s wife in UT
When I first came to CAMP BIMI in 2011, I had my life completely planned out. But that was the problem: I
had planned it. I grew up in a Christian home, and at a young age, I prayed the sinner’s prayer (or at least that’s
what I’m told; I don’t actually remember that). Even though I wasn’t saved, I believed in God, and I believed that
the best use of my life would be serving Him. I had my heart set on being a missionary because I thought that
was the best way I could possibly serve God.
However, by the time I went to CAMP BIMI II in 2013, I had realized that something was missing in my life. Just
a few months later, as a sophomore missions major in Bible College, I realized my need for Christ and accepted
Him as my personal Savior. I didn’t quite know what that would mean for my future plans to be a missionary, but
I know now that God had used those desires in my heart all along to bring me to the exact place He wanted me.
I originally had my heart set on a specific country, but at CAMP BIMI III in 2014, God opened my eyes to the
need for the Gospel around the whole world, not just one place. In the following months, God continued to soften my heart and make
me willing to serve Him anywhere in the world, even if that meant staying in America.
Another thing God started to soften my heart about was that if He brought a man into my life, my calling would be to follow my man
wherever God led him. That was something I had been taught (remember the session at CB, ‘Follow Your Man’?), but as an unsaved
person, I resisted it. I wanted to go where I wanted! But the Holy Spirit taught me that ministry for God is not about me; it’s about
God. If I could be more effective in my service to the Lord as a married woman, I was completely willing!
Little did I know that a year later God would bring a man named Steven into my life. God made it clear very quickly that my call was to
follow Steven and be his help meet in ministry. After we had both finished college, we were married in January 2017. Less than two weeks
after our wedding, Steven started serving as the full-time children’s pastor at Faith Baptist Church in Layton, Utah.
As for me, I’m just his full-time wife. If you had told me in 2011 that I would just be a wife, I would have been heartbroken. What a change
God has made in my life since then! I’m so thankful for the life God has called me to. If you had told me in 2011 that I would be serving
in America, not on a foreign field, I would have been devastated. But God worked in my heart to prepare me for the life He had planned
for me in Utah. And I know that my role in missions here is important as well.
I get to teach a missionary story in our children’s church every Sunday. I have no doubt that God will call some of those kids to be
missionaries! One of my favorite parts of our ministry responsibilities is getting to take the visiting missionaries out for lunch. We try to
be a blessing to them, but more often we’re the ones receiving the blessing!
My life hasn’t turned out exactly as I planned, but it has turned out exactly as God planned. And that has been far better!
14 CAMP BIMI