CBM Intern – His Guiding Hand
By CBM National intern, Jacob Taylor –
Hi, my name is Jacob Taylor and I would like to tell you how I got involved with Children’s Bible Ministries(CBM) and what God has been teaching me these last few months during my time at the National office at the Tuckaleechee Retreat Center in Townsend, TN. I guess starting at the beginning would be a good spot, right?
I was born in a town called Hanford, California, and throughout my life so far, I’ve lived as far south as Miami and as far north as Anchorage, Alaska. Back in 2011, I moved to Rainsville, AL. At the time, I looked at it like that was a bad thing; after all, a sixteen-year-old kid certainly knows everything, right? Yeah…not so much. While I was angry and taking it out on everyone around me, God was still working in my life. While I felt abandoned by my earthly father, my heavenly Father never abandoned me. He was working in the background, guiding my path to a place where I’d be ready to go when He called me. That was a painful walk and I made so many mistakes, but He is so patient with me and He knows what He is doing. So in Rainsville, we started attending this church called Wills Valley. I met one of the pastor’s sons, Stewart, along with Jeff, the Director for Ponderosa Bible Camp. Jeff invested in my life, and I became very close to him and his family. I am so grateful God allowed them to be a part of my life.
My friend Stewart went on a missions trip to Honduras; I know very little about what he did down there, but I know he was teaching and loving on the kids as he shared God’s love for them and what Jesus Christ did for all of us on the Cross. When he came back, the church was discussing missions, and wanting to get more of its members involved. I remember talking to Stewart about it, telling him I felt a strong urge to GO, but that I didn’t know where or how. He told me to pray about it and seek God. But at the time, I didn’t have a relationship with Jesus like I thought I did, and after Stewart left for Honduras again, I fell out of the church. This cycle repeated a few times until the summer of 2015. That summer I surrendered my life completely to Christ.
The rest of 2015 and beginning of 2016 were actually pretty rough. I was depressed because my new job as a delivery driver kept me out of church, and when I would get home I was so tired I just slept. But soon, summer came around and I decided I wanted to spend more time at camp with my friends, helping out any way I could. While there, I met Timmy! (Timmy was a CBM National Intern with Team 3, but has now graduated and at the time I’m writing this, is trying to raise support to become full-time at Ponderosa.) Timmy and I became really good friends, but that isn’t very hard with Timmy!
Timmy told me a little bit about the internship, and sometime after that I found myself on the phone with the National Intern Coordinator, Jacquelyn Davis (JP), we had a quick discussion, and for the next few weeks, I had Timmy asking me if I had applied for Team 5 yet. So I applied, and then waited a while. I went through a time of self-doubt, and thinking I wasn’t going to get the chance to join the internship, which really hit me hard. I remember feeling so upset, and then just having this strange urge to read the book of Esther.
Esther 4:14 struck me, and it reads, “For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” I remember praying, and asking God for the opportunity to GO. I told Him no matter what the cost, or what I had to do, I was willing and ready to go. After about two to three weeks, I got my answer; I got accepted into Team 5!
So I left my job, sold my car to help pay off some debts, and here I am. I have learned a lot in this short period of time being here, and I am learning new things and getting out of my comfort zone in things like sharing my testimony in front of others, teaching lessons to kids at the local youth group, or just talking to people about God in general.
2 Timothy 1:7 says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” I try to focus on that going through each day. God is the One who brought me to this internship, and with His help, I am going to make it through. I thank Him for every trial and failure I have had, as well as my weaknesses,because they keep me falling back on Him.