By Chelsie Johnson


I've always had a heart to serve others. I’m the type of person who is drawn towards people who are going through obstacles in life and I want to do everything in my power to help them out. However, going out of my comfort zone - meaning getting too close to someone I didn't know, was a no. I could volunteer at church without second-guessing it, or donate clothes for clothes drive easy. Sitting down and getting to know a stranger, which was something I would never do.

This all changed in October of this year. I was doing research for class when I came across the Big Brother, Big Sister (BBBS) website. I read through the mentoring programs they have and what it means to be a Big. A sudden heaviness overcame me along with the urge to volunteer. I told myself, no, while closing out of the site. Not even five minutes later I was back to the BBBS website filling out the application. I remember calling my friend and telling her I was going to volunteer…she laughed at me. Literally laughed. Her response was that I am far too busy to add anything else to the schedule. My reply, God laid this on my heart at this moment in time, I’m not sure where I will find the time, but I know I can spend at least 10 hours a month mentoring someone. She got quiet and we got off the phone. The following week I heard from an employee at BBBS, named Yvonne. She immediately wanted to set up an interview and within a couple weeks I was in her office answering questions about my past, present, and future. Talk about intimidating. My background check came back clear and I was in the process of being matched!

I met Diamond a couple weeks ago. She is 12 years old, in 6th grade, and has an amazing heart. Diamond has experienced things at such a young age, that I hope to never experience in my life. I have formed a bond with not only her, but also her older sister who takes care of her. They welcomed me into their family immediately. My automatic reaction is to want to spoil Diamond. However, I know reaching her through the gift of serving is going to give her a far greater reward. 

I went 100% out of my comfort zone when signing up for BBBS. Maybe you’re okay when it comes to strangers, perhaps you say no every time you’re asked to go on a mission’s trip. I challenge all of you to say ‘yes’ just one time. I guarantee God is going to bless you while receiving the glory of whatever He has called you to do. Going out of my comfort zone was the best thing I did that October day. I gained a little sister, a summer internship with BBBS (again, totally God) and a chance to minister to a complete stranger. We are called to make disciples of all nations. Get out and go!