My name is Donald Young. I was born and raised on Long Island. My family went to a Southern Baptist Church there. When I was 11 years old I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior and was baptized. I attended West Sayville Christian School from 6th grade through 9th grade.
There, I grew in my walk with Jesus. I was very active in our church and youth group. When I started 10th grade in public high school, I tried to live a Christian life, but the world was hard to resist. I started to let worldly influences into my life. Still involved in our youth group. I taught Sunday school and ran our youth group at 17.
Then I graduated high school and was encouraged by my pastor and church leaders to pursue a youth ministry pastorship. I felt the Lord calling me to that ministry but couldn’t leave the worldly life I was living. I was living a double life. At 21, I was convicted by God to give up my double life and He opened the doors to go to seminary and pursue the path God had planned out for me.
Then I got scared. I didn’t want to give up my other life so I left Long Island and went to North Carolina. I went to church there and I felt nothing, so I stopped going. I went to school to be a police officer. I found no peace in that. I knew the Lord was always watching over me, but I refused to come back to Him.
Over the years it got easier and easier to stop listening to that small gentle voice in my head of God’s yearning for me to repent. Through the years, I did make sure my children went to church. Not for me, but for my mother. Every time I spoke to her on the phone or saw her, she would ask if we went to church. So I sent the children to church just to keep my mom happy. I didn’t go. In 2012, my wife Kenia started going to church with our 2 children. On Easter in 2012 Kenia was saved. She wanted me to go to church with her, but I made sure I had to work on Sundays.
One year after Kenia’s salvation, I went to church with her and the moment I walked into church I felt ashamed to be there. I wept the whole sermon. I didn’t even wait for the invitational song to start before quickly walking to the altar and speaking with the pastor. I asked God to forgive me for leaving Him and asked to come back into His loving grace. I asked Him to use me as he called me twenty-five years ago.
We started serving the Lord in Tucson the next week. In August, my wife came to me and said she felt the Lord calling us to move back to Long Island and serve Him there. At first, I tested the Lord by saying, “If God wants us to go to New York, He needs to open the door wide.” Well, He did, and I got a job transfer to New York the first time I tried. My wife’s family and my family told us, “If that is what God wants, then go.” The money came and the old vehicle we had made the trip.
I started working on the Monday after we got there and had a place to live the next week. God is good. Then we started looking where God wanted us to go to church. We felt the Lord draw us to Trinity. We went several times. My wife told me this would be the church we would worship in. I wanted to search more, but we kept coming back to Trinity. We committed to go there. After attending for 4 months, Pastor John asked us if we would move into the vacant parsonage for ministry purposes. That included maintaining a presence there and doing maintenance of the church and the church grounds. We would also over see and house any interns that would be serving Trinity Baptist Church. We praise God for this provision.
We moved into the parsonage and helped fix up the downstairs of the house, which is where the interns would stay. We are to feed them and make sure their needs are met. Ministering at Trinity is a great opportunity. It is a small church with needs of growth and kingdom minded vision. Please keep us in your prayers as our church grows.
Once we were settled in at Trinity, the Holy Spirit spoke to me leading me to follow His path, the one He had placed before me 25 years ago. I told the Lord I didn’t have the time to go to school, I needed to work. Well, the Lord had other plans. In January 2015 I got pneumonia and the flu, which took me out of work for the month of January. The Lord supplied all our needs during that time. Then in February, my neck and arm pain, which I’ve had for years, got worse and I couldn’t work. This whole time my wife and I were praying for a door to open to pursue school. Well, the Lord is great.
On February 15th I started taking online classes with the Christian Leaders Institute. I was not working so I had the time for school. The school is an accredited school and is free; only donations online. I had neck surgery on April 15th and I’m not sure if I will ever be able to go back to my job at Home Depot. But, to the glory of God, I will finish my ministry classes and be ready to minister for His Glory and His Kingdom. I plan on continuing my education if the Lord desires. Only the Lord knows where He will lead us next. We are willing to go wherever He leads.
If it wasn’t for Christian Leaders Institute. I would not have been able to pursue God’s ministry. I learned so much to use in bringing God’s word to the lost. CLI has great programs and classes to train up the students in the knowledge of our faith to bring it to the world. CLI has prepared me for that. During my time at CLI, the Holy Spirit has led me to pursue my calling into being a Youth Pastor. Now I am being ordained. I know that God will lead us to a place we can serve and bring lost souls to Jesus. TO GOD BE THE GLORY!
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