Measured in Stories
After a time of living her life away from the church, Kathryn decided she needed to get back into a genuine community around Christ-centered relationships. As she began to lead a group of middle school girls within Summit Students, Kathryn realized her next right step was baptism and declaring her commitment to Jesus.
Dr. Marvin Hardy was a pediatrician at a private practice for many years, but God was calling him to a new path. By utilizing his gifts and beginning a medical home, Dr. Hardy created a place that reflects the heart of Christ by offering the highest level of health care to the uninsured in Orlando. For Dr. Hardy, taking this step and opening the doors of Grace Medical Home was nothing more than obeying and responding to God's voice.
Over the past few years, Laura and Jared have joined Summit in the church’s partnership with I Care For The Nation located in Ethiopia. The founder of this organization, Ayni, has taken bold steps in obeying God and helping children and women find hope. Through hers and God's faithfulness, these women and children have found a safe place to process their stories, heal, learn new skills, and possibly be introduced to Jesus for the first time. Real change is happening in and around I Care For The Nation, and for Laura and Jared, they are honored God has called them both to take part in the work that is being done.
Bonnie had never been part of a bible study in her life, but it was through her first Connect group at Summit that she learned what discipleship means and how to learn, serve, worship, and pursue Jesus within the context of community. When the leader of the group, Asha, had some concerns that the Connect group was becoming too large for each member to have adequate time to contribute in the discussions, she reached out to her Connect Coach Amanda for advice. That first group became a launch pad for Bonnie to mature spiritually and step into a leadership role, enabling her group to multiply and more folks at Summit to have a way to encounter Jesus together.
Brian and Kelly were looking for ways to serve together as a couple. As they were searching, they not only plugged into the church, but their children were able to do the same. Together, this family is utilizing their individual gifts to serve others, and have discovered the beauty when they allow others within the Summit community to serve them.
When Ciara was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, she and her family wanted God to fix this condition. Unbeknownst to them, God would mend this circumstance, but it would be through a provision of Christ-centered community with middle and high school students, and adult leaders at Summit. A place that would be known as a safe environment for discussion to help students take their next right step toward Christ.
In 2008, Lori felt the call to be a part of God’s redeeming work for the most vulnerable in our world. For her, this was traveling halfway around the world to be with the villagers in Malawi, Africa. Her first trip to Malawi was life-changing in many ways! Since then she has been able to continue to have a deep relationship with the villagers, as she has journeyed back to the country five times since 2014.
Jeff's decision in getting baptized happened similarly to how he really discovered who Jesus is. It happened organically. After much prayer and thought about considering baptism, Jeff wanted to make this proclamation at the next Beach Baptism event. Due to an ominous weather forecast, the baptisms were moved indoors to the Herndon campus. Jeff was still excited to celebrate this moment, and to continue to be a part of a community who is seeking the love, grace, and wisdom of Jesus.
Will loves going to Base Camp every Sunday where he gets to learn how to make wise choices and to know that he can trust God no matter what. Base Camp is not only a place for kids, but a place for volunteer leaders who love kids and love to have fun! Matt and Austin were not only able to invest the time into Will’s experience in the classroom, but also outside of the four walls of the church. During the two years Will had Matt and Austin as leaders, Will's parents noticed a change. He was having such meaningful discussions about his understanding of the Bible!
Adoption was always discussed between Brad and Audrey in growing their family, but nowhere in their wildest thoughts did they ever believe they would face an uphill battle of international special needs adoption while fighting and beating cancer. Although their journey was difficult, they continued to trust that God would provide and bring their daughter home.
niceSERVE has always been an event Ambia has looked forward to participating in with the community at Summit. After serving on a cleaning project at New Hope for Kids a few years ago, she felt the call to step up and serve with this organization beyond the niceSERVE event. Ambia has been volunteering as a grief facilitator at New Hope for Kids for several years now. Her character and identity have maturely formed in servanthood in a tangible expression of Jesus' love to others in the local community.
Being in control of life was everything to Jimmy. After hiding this fact from the people around him (and even himself) for 25 years, he eventually reached a point when he knew he had to relinquish this control. Through many conversations with his brother, Eddie, and examples of forgiveness lived out by his wife, Amy, Jimmy finally let go and decided to actively engage in a relationship with Jesus. Once he sincerely believed that Jesus is who He said He was, baptism would become a pivotal moment for Jimmy in proclaiming his faith.