Hi my name is Nick and I’m excited to be joining as an intern at the Vine and St Tim’s from September. I’ve just had the joy of finishing 4 years studying Engineering at university in Durham and that has been a place where my faith has really grown and flourished, particularly in growing more of a heart for mission and evangelism.
Before coming to university, it was at Soul Survivor in the summer of 2014 mid high school that felt like personally for me a place where faith really came alive. I was filled with a passion and excitement that I had never experienced before during worship and I remember some song lyrics “Set a fire down in my soul that I can’t contain, that I can’t control” really resonating with me as it seemed to put words to what I was experiencing and it really did feel like a fire and passion for Jesus was lit there. Before then I was very shy, lacked a lot of self-confidence and had only a few very close friends and it felt like a lot of my identity was found in doing well academically. Experiencing Jesus’ love for me personally at Soul Survivor and realising Jesus really had died for me began to set me free in so many ways and rewrite my sense of worth. It really marked a turning point where I gradually came out of my shell and it felt like I had gained permission to be the real me and no longer had to hide. From that summer my faith has really grown and it’s been the best adventure of following Jesus since then.
I’ve really seen God’s faithfulness bring me through A levels and making a way for me to go to Durham even though I didn’t quite make the grades and His faithfulness throughout my degree sustaining me and carrying me, even though I didn’t always find it the easiest and often found it hard to be passionate about.
Durham has been a wonderful time of growth in my faith being surrounded and supported by a great Christian community hungry for Jesus and seeing His kingdom come. In Durham Jesus has really taught me a lot particularly about evangelism, mission and growing in being led by the spirit and in gifts of the Spirit. One of the joys has been doing outreach with the Christian Union and with church family. One example was blessing and helping people outside the night clubs and sharing Jesus there, as well as going out onto the streets with friends and asking the Spirit to guide us and give us clues of guiding us to specific people to chat to and pray for. It has been cool to see Jesus meet with people in different ways and to see more of His heart and love for them.
I think I’ve really learnt a lot about mission and am still on a journey of discovering how it is so much about watching and listening to what Jesus is already doing and partnering and joining in with what He already is doing in pursuing the one.
Another privilege I’ve had is being able to meet and get to know some of the homeless in Durham both on the streets and in a winter night shelter have learnt a lot from them and feel like homelessness is something that God has particularly begun to break my heart for. Being involved in a society called Just Love all about pursuing the Biblical call to justice has really challenged me about how Jesus calls us to get uncomfortable in being good news to the poor and how prayer and intercession play such a key role in that.
I’m so thankful for the experiences and adventure that Jesus has given me in Durham and it has felt like a springboard for the new adventure Jesus has in store in Sheffield. I’ve felt particularly led to doing New Wine Discipleship year here in Sheffield and serving as an intern at the Vine and St Tim’s as I’m really keen to develop and grow gifts in evangelism, outreach, serving the poor and preaching and pressing into rhythms of prayer and worship with the house of prayer. Ministry, particularly in evangelism, is something I feel potentially called to longer term in the future and now having finished an Engineering degree and unsure of how passionate I am now about pursuing an Engineering career, taking a year out to serve Jesus and the local church seemed like the ideal opportunity as well as having space to pray and discern more of where Jesus may be calling me longer term.
I’m really excited to get stuck into the life of the Vine and St Tim’s, getting stuck into the missional community around the vicarage and serving alongside you all and being family together. Can’t wait to meet you all and see all that Jesus is going to do and is already doing in bringing about His kingdom here in Sheffield!