Posted: 5/4/20 at 7:00am. Written by Austin Williams.
My journey with the Kairos Initiative began a few years ago as an undergrad student at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). I was a freshman who was struggling to find his place in college. I was struggling with transition and was distant from God. Thankfully, I ended up finding the Baptist Collegiate Ministry (BCM) at VCU. This was the beginning of my journey to discover who God has created me to be–and the beginning of me learning to live in relationship with God.
Through BCM, I got connected with the Kairos Missions Initiative (KMI). Through this, I had the privilege of serving on the 2017 team that went to Vienna, Austria. KMI opened me up to the bigger picture of God’s Kingdom. It was incredible to see the ways that God is working all around the world, and to be a part of that through missions.
KMI left me with a fire for God. I wanted to know him more and wanted to serve more. This led me to apply for the Kairos Leadership Initiative (KLI). KLI created this amazing space for discernment and personal growth. At the end of my year with KLI, I was strongly feeling the pull towards vocational ministry after college. While this was exciting, it was also confusing and left me with a lot of questions.
The Kairos Internship Initiative (KII) is the place where I found a lot of those answers. KII has been amazing tool to help me better discern where God is leading as well as given me the opportunity to grow in my ability to minister. For the past school year, it has been my privilege to serve as an intern at the Baptist Collegiate Ministry at Longwood University and Hampden-Sydney College. This past year has been amazing and so rewarding. I have learned so much about what it looks to be a part of a ministry setting as well learned to be a stronger leader, a better public speaker, and how to equip others as disciples of Christ.
One of my favorite aspects of this year has been helping to create a place where the freshman guys could get plugged in with community. These guys and I have met weekly this school year for lunch to chat and catch up with one another. Over this year, they have become a tight-knit group of friends. It’s been encouraging to see them connect with one another and with BCM as a whole. It’s surreal to realize that I’ve come full circle. I started my journey as the lonely freshman looking for community, and now I’m helping to create that community for students on campus. The Kairos Initiative has shaped me into the leader and person that I am today. They have provided amazing opportunities and resources for me as a student, and I am grateful for the opportunity to be able serve with them.
Austin Williams is a Kairos intern at Longwood University and Hampden-Sydney College in Farmville, VA.