Kaylea Jobe spent her spring break in Panama City, Florida, in a less than typical way for most students. She spent it serving the Lord and sharing her faith in Christ.
Jobe, a senior at University of Central Arkansas, joined more than 100 Arkansas Baptist Collegiate Ministry students and leaders participating in Beach Reach, a partnership between college ministries throughout the nation.
Beach Reach utilizes vans and buses to provide free shuttle service for students around town, providing an opportunity to talk with them about the gospel. During the week there were 3,708 passengers, 1,903 gospel conversations and prayer with 2,148 students, resulting in 61 professions of faith.
‘Big win for everyone’
“I would say that is a big win for everyone,” Jobe said.
Though she had participated in a few community projects with her church during high school, this was her first college spring break missions trip.
“This trip has not been at all what I imagined it would be before we came,” Jobe noted. “I knew we were giving van rides and walking on the streets, but I didn’t really know what that entailed. I loved being on the vans getting to talk and getting to know all kinds of people.
“Yes, they are usually a little intoxicated, but Jesus meets people where they are and that is what we are supposed to do.”
‘Ready to talk about the Lord’
Jobe noted everyone seemed receptive to talking and wanted to engage in conversation. As the week progressed, she said, they became known as the “Jesus people.”
“That is awesome to me knowing that people are calling wanting to talk about Jesus,” Jobe said. “I was navigator one night and had to call the guy we were picking up. On his way to the van he yelled on the phone, ‘Come on guys! I’m ready to talk about the Lord!’ It was awesome to hear and experience that.
“Even though we were picking him up at a bar to take him home, he still knew he wanted that kind of conversation. But it is sad knowing that he wants that conversation while still acting in disobedience and sin. That is why this type of ministry is so important because we are meeting them where they are and showing them love by caring.”
Filling the void
She added, “Most of these people are acting this way because they are missing something in their life and trying to fill a void. We are just trying to make sure they are safe and show and tell them about the love of Jesus. That is the greatest thing they could ever receive.”
To read other stories on past Beach Reach efforts, click here and here.
EDITOR’S NOTE — This story was written and originally published by Arkansas Baptist News.