The Childhood Stories that are Still Changing Lives

If you are like me, there are few stories that are as popular and widely known as the Biblical story of David and Goliath. It is easy to assume that the story of the young man defeating the giant is about as widely known as the story of Luke Skywalker defeating Darth Vader. Such was to my surprise when I met Cam Slach, a 25 year old who grew up in Orange County and had never heard the famed story of David and Goliath – let alone the story of Jesus. It was during the first session of Faith 101 that I remember Cam asking, “Who is David and Goliath?” during our discussion.

“Cam’s story is a powerful reminder that the harvest is still plentiful and people are still in need of hearing of the love and hope that Christ has to give.”Aaron Ophaug - Local Outreach Pastor

When I spoke with cam at Faith 101 it was clear that he had come here because he wasn’t sure where else to go – Cam had recently hit a very hard rock bottom. It was after many difficult life circumstances had robbed Cam of his joy and purpose that Cam went searching for answers and was led to Friends Church. Once at Friends, a fellow staff member heard Cam’s story and suggested that Cam sign-up for Faith 101 – a simple 5-week course where people engage in discussions about who Jesus is and what faith is all about.

During the first session of Faith 101, Cam was quiet and kept mostly to himself, but as the weeks continued on, Cam was soaking in all of the new information that he could, as he learned about who Jesus was and what it meant to be a Christian. By the end of the course, Cam knew that he was definitely interested in Jesus, but he still wasn’t ready to give his life over to Christ.

Then, a few weeks after Faith 101, Cam found himself sharing coffee with our local outreach intern, Joseph Luigs, talking once more about the hope that Jesus provides and how it can change our lives. It was in that coffee shop that Cam had little hesitation — he was ready to give his life to Christ.

Since that time when Cam gave his life to Christ almost a year ago, he could tell you many stories about how God has transformed his life and brought hope and healing to a life that at one point seemed so hopeless.

This week, as I sat down in a Faith 101 leaders meeting, I looked across the table and saw Cam passionate and excited to volunteer for our next session of Faith 101. I couldn’t help but smile to myself. Even through stories as simple as that of David and Goliath, God used Faith 101 to ignite within Cam a passion for the Lord.

Today, if you find yourself longing to discover a deeper hope, or even learn more about what faith is all about, I want to encourage you to check out Faith 101 (or even bring a friend who might need some hope). And to all of us, let us allow Cam’s story to be a powerful reminder that the harvest is still plentiful and people are still in need of hearing of the love and hope that Christ has to give.

Aaron Ophaug

Local Outreach Pastor