Jairo asks God to use him
By Julia Waidelich | Ecuador in South America
Jairo has known Jesus as Lord since he was a child, but God started shaping him into a leader through SIM’s youth ministry in Loja, Ecuador.
Jairo said: “As a young university student, I had many needs in my spiritual life. To say that the temptations and opportunities that the world offered me would not win over my desire to follow Christ was a big challenge.”
Several groups within SIM Ecuador invested in him and revealed how Jairo could use his life to glorify God.
Alpha to Omega
A discipleship group called Alpha to Omega soon attracted Jairo. It was a setting for young people to grow in their personal relationships with Jesus through Bible study and times of transparency.
They also learned to share the message of the gospel creatively, using drama and theater. This gave them the opportunity to present the gospel in churches and youth events.
Jairo said with great excitement: “I am very grateful to God and the leaders of that group for the opportunity … to mature and learn through the time we spent together. The teachings will always be in my heart, and they have helped me in difficult times when temptations arise to take the hand of Jesus who wins every battle.”
Equipping Servants International
As Jairo developed his faith further, he got involved in SIM Ecuador’s church leadership programme: Equipping Servants International (ESI). The programme seeks to encourage church leaders and pastors to be faithful to Scripture and accountable to each other.
Jairo’s biblical knowledge expanded, he understood the Word of God better and developed tools for evangelism. These resources have helped him to serve in the church and take on greater responsibilities.
Sports and outdoor adventure
Another part of SIM Ecuador youth ministry, sports and outdoor adventure, gave Jairo the opportunity to participate in camps, hiking tours, camping and much more. These allowed him to make new friends and advance in his walk with Jesus.
Interacting in these groups greatly impacted his spiritual life and strengthened his desire to be used by God. The ÚSAME Camp (meaning “use me”) had a profound effect on Jairo, stirring his heart to serve.
Jairo said: “I was moved to live out my life as a follower of Christ, to not only be content with an established position within the church but to pursue Jesus' mandate to be and make disciples.”
While at the ÚSAME Camp, Jairo was touched by the suffering of persecuted believers in other countries.
He said: “It made me ask myself about the things I give more importance to than God, even living in a country where there is no persecution. The Lord encouraged me to share his good news with those who do not know him and to ensure that my friends would see Jesus in my life. I want to put in practice the example of Jesus by making disciples and getting involved in his kingdom in my daily walk.”
"I want to put in practice the example of Jesus by making disciples and getting involved in his kingdom in my daily walk.”
The Lord has now called him to be a deacon, a worship leader and an adult Bible class teacher. He is also facilitating ESI programmes with another SIM worker. Jairo is a pillar in the church already, though he is still a university student.
Just like Timothy, Jairo has “set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity” even in his youth because of his trust in Jesus (1 Tim. 4:12).
Equip students through youth ministry
There are many other young students like Jairo in the universities of Loja who need encouragement on their journeys with the Lord. There are still others who need to hear the gospel for the first time.
SIM Ecuador is actively looking for more workers who are ready to build connections with youth for the kingdom. Are you interested in finding out more about joining SIM Ecuador’s youth ministry? Contact us today.
• more workers who are passionate about Jesus to share the gospel with and disciple students in Loja.
• a worker to communicate the gospel to young people through technological tools such as videos, photos and social network platforms. This is a great need since most young people use social media daily.
• the new youth ministry Reflection, English, Friends and Fun (REFF) that seeks to reach young people through teaching English and music.
• finances to be able to develop ministerial activities during 2020.