Hard Work + Determination = Opportunity

When I went to Campus Harvest in Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina in March, I was expecting great things. Afterward, I knew the path to follow my gifts and talents ahead of me was not going to be easy.

The path of self-motivation to see the bigger picture has often left me uncertain. When my gifting wore thin, doubt walked itself over. To regain my determination, I had to seek out life-giving people to lead me to a better place. The words I received from each leader in my life reminded me to work hard and to keep going. Now many months later, I am starting to see great things come to life.

Within the past week, I became an online community builder for Campus Harvest for the month of December through my business, RT Consulting. Yesterday, I wrote my first blog post, e-blast snap shots, and social media content for Every Nation’s Campus Harvest. I have written such things for my business and other clients, but to write for the organization I had as a goal in mind is hard to fathom.

Let me try.

I was still in college when I started helping organizations in 2010. Needless to say, I quickly found the entrepreneurial spirit. Almost three years later, I have gained a business coach and have surrounded myself with great leaders who have “all been there” where I am now. The vision I had for myself helped form RT Consulting. I represent a company that wants to help individuals and organizations start the conversation to connect them with their customers. Some people have called this a “B2C Liaison” while others call me a connector. I call myself a community builder.

I made goals and check points to keep my business moving. The second to last check point I had made was to work with Every Nation and Campus Harvest. Now that I am doing simply that– it’s time to work on my last check point, and that is to do my business full-time. As I continue to strive to work at this full-time, I need to set new goals and check points.

It’s hard to put into words how far I have come with the hard work, dedication, and the support and influence of many others to have this opportunity in front of me. All I have is my gratitude… thank you!

My Heart is Willing and Know Great Things Are Happening

The sudden news of Dick Clark’s passing on Wednesday was unimaginable. Many of us did not know Dick Clark personally, but we were all familiar with his word on American Band Stand, New Years Eve shows, and other TV specials. My thoughts are prayers are with his family and friends now who may find peace during this difficult time.

When I heard the news of Dick Clark’s passing, I did not have to Google information on who he was or what he did–I just knew. These thoughts stirred inside me wondering what do people know about me. I know, I wrote a blog asking you, “When Was The Last Time You Googled Yourself?” but this is something more, much more. These waves of thoughts started my search for who I am and what I represent in my every day life. What do people know about me away from the internet and social media?

First and foremost, I am a Christ follower. I am not religious, nor am I “super spiritual”. I have a personal relationship with Christ who has saved me by His grace, and by faith I know I have security in Him. When I work at my part-time job, I am able to share wisdom and encouragement with fellow believers and non-believers in subtle and bold ways. The Lord has given me a gift of empathy to feel people’s emotions just as much as a person is feeling them. By working in customer service, I have learned quickly I can get just as “heated” as unsatisfied customers can, or I can stay calm and approach each situation with grace and impart them with a softer emotion than they are experiencing.

In March, I went to a church conference called Campus Harvest. I have gone for three years now and this past year was a little different. I was expecting to be a room leader or “in charge” of some responsibility, but to my surprise I wasn’t. I had room leaders who were ok with me being their age and not in an authority position. Throughout the weekend, I was pursuing the next season of my life through God’s hands. During one of the services, there was an altar call for those who had a call for full-time campus ministry to come down. My heart was eager to go, but the words “campus ministry” did not sit well in my stomach. I prayed and asked God to reveal to me if this was my call. He gave me peace to sit and not answer this call. Later that evening, there was another service and this time a campus minister gave another altar call. “If God has put a call on your life, please come down.” He repeated himself and I said another prayer as my heart was eager to respond. The Lord revealed to me He has put a call on my life, so I went down to respond.

When I went on stage with the others who answered to this call, I felt compelled to offer hugs to those around me. This might not sound like a big deal, but for me–that’s huge! I am an introvert and often a wallflower, so this was definitely God taking my insecurities and making them His own. I remember hugging a few girls and rubbing shoulders with a few boys who just looked scared and overwhelmed with emotions. I had an overwhelming sense of peace knowing I was in the right place at the right time. When we were giving our contact information to this guy in the red jacket, I could not hold back my excitement so I started talking to him. “So… I’m not this minister, preacher type person…but I like the marketing and social media aspect of things. Is there a place for me in the ministry?” He perked up and asked for my personal information aside from the database we were entering our contact information in. This is how I met Gene Mack.

Later that evening, we continued to have a worship service and I felt a tap on my shoulder. A sweet young woman asked if she could pray for me. This act of obedience on Anna Johnson‘s part has blessed me with a new friend. She encouraged me to use my voice to help the next generation and explore God’s love. Her bold prayer brought me to tears realizing my life is not my own. With these new-found connections, I met up with earlier connections. I had the privilege to worship next to Mrs. Lynette Lewis and meet her assistant, Whitney. In a group session, I met her husband, Pastor Ron Lewis who has encouraged me to pray and seek the Lord to where He is calling me. I am in the middle of his book “Answering The Call” and receiving new revelations for my life.

Am I called to full-time ministry? Am I called to enhance His kingdom? Nothing has opened a door to where God is leading to through, but I am using my voice to reveal my heart is willing and know great things are happening. I found a new friend from Every Nation Ministries, Joey Carranza  on Twitter where had told me, (paraphrased) “Social media is only but a tool to bring the next generation to Christ.” It is a tool I am using to influence others for His glory. What are you sharing with the world? Online?

My presence online is only a glimpse of who I am, but shows you a piece of the bigger picture God has created for me. May this blog give you a lasting impression of what God can do for your life.

21 Days.

We have all heard that 21 days can form or break a habit. Twenty one days is three weeks. The Daniel Fast takes place over 21 days. The band Blink-182 has a song titled “21 Days”. Even Director Basil Dean directed a movie of 21 days in 1940. All of these are examples of what has happened in 21 one days, but I am about to tell you what is coming in 21 days:  Campus Harvest 2012.

Every year, Every Nation Ministries promotes an event in three cities that welcomes high school and college students to meet and worship God to take back their campus. Driving from each hometown to each designated city allows students to connect with mates that they may or may not already know from campus. When you arrive, you immediately feel excited for what the weekend holds for you. On the first night there is worship and a message that uplifts you to a place you wish you could never leave. Your energy awakens your tired spirit that the world has exhausted. The next day has more worship and small group meetings with different topics of interest to choose from. By the end of the evening, there’s more worship and great lessons to show how truly divine this weekend was for you to reconnect with God in a way unlike ever before.

The first year I had went to Campus Harvest, I did not know what to expect. I ended up making a decision to stop treating God like a genie. My savior has called me to have a relationship with him and I was not being fair to him. I took my experience from the weekend and continued to grow in my spiritual life that made my every day life more fulfilling. My second time going to Campus Harvest was last year where I was a room leader for four girls. To share how much this event had meant to me since my first time coming to those girls and the others had encouraged me to continue growing in my faith. I had received many blessings reminding me I am getting closer to carrying out the plans God has for me. With my third year coming up on March 23 through March 25, I am anticipating the event to bring out the best of what is yet to come.

Campus Harvest 2012

This years theme is Arise. It’s a powerful statement for everyone to Arise to the life we are called to live. How would you like to partner with me and raise money to attend? I am asking for your support of any amount that can get me closer to my goal of $1,000 in 21 days. Each penny of support is going to be distributed among five people in need of funding to go including myself. It is about $200 for each ticket, deposit, and fees for the transportation and living expenses for the weekend.

When I share my testimony with people, Campus Harvest is the milestone that has set my life on the path it is on today. Many students cannot afford to pay for school and afford to go to an event like this. How wonderful would it be if I can share my testimony with someone and have them as excited as I am for Campus Harvest and say, “Come on, pack your bags… we’re going” knowing their ticket is already taken care of by your help.

You may contact me at RLTarquin@yahoo.com for any questions. I’m accepting payments through PayPal with the same e-mail address, or you can give to my church home at Southpoint Community Church that is helping us go. Thank you for reading this and may we all arise to the life we are called to live! I thank and bless you my friend.

Walk Further in Faith

For a while now I have tried to walk further in my faith and try to catch a glimpse of the “bigger” picture that lies ahead. When I couldn’t see more than two feet ahead of me, I would get discouraged. I reminded myself to keep walking further, but it sure has not been easy.

I have worked in a retail store for seven years and counting. During that time I had two internships where I gained agency and “real life” experience. I was so certain when my contracted terms were up I would been given a job, but alas nothing. I have applied to at least six corporate jobs that sparked my interest but have not landed a solid interview. My persistence gave me a voice to talk to those in management roles around me that led me to contacts. These contacts have admitted it is hard to get in, but once I am in the doors– I’m in. Instead of getting discouraged, I am encouraging others to keep learning and reaching out like I am. When people ask me what do I do, I tell them I am an “Aspiring Business to Consumer Liaison” that works for Publix and enjoys social media and making connections with people through my writing.

When my church asked me to help with creating content for my church and its social media platforms, I was ecstatic! The pastor of my church leader is a part of Every Nation Ministries that is a hub of multiple churches across the nation. As I embraced my role at Southpoint Community Church, I started to dream about working at Every Nation in a similar way. When I asked to interview someone in the non-profit sector in leadership, I immediately wanted to sit down and talk with my pastor to tell him about my dream. When I reached out to his assistant, she apologized and said he is booked for a couple of months. Did I give up? No. Instead I reached out to another pastor who graciously found time for me for an interview and to express my dreams with the church and Every Nation. He gave me a contact to reach who is in Every Nation to see what could be done. Did this get me one step closer? Not yet…

This weekend I picked up a book that I have read on and off again called “Climbing the Ladder in Stilettos” by Lynette Lewis. It was all in God’s timing to start reading it again as I found the current pages to apply to my life so perfectly! I decided to tweet some of the powerful lines from the pages that spoke to me. I have done this for the past two days because I know it could benefit others who might be reading my tweets and are in need of similar encouragement. To my surprise, I had a new e-mail in my inbox and it was from her–Mrs. Lynette Lewis herself! I immediately stopped what I was doing and read her kind words. By the end of the e-mail, I have gained a new business prospect. This is exciting news because she is an inspiration to my life. And the best part of it all is her husband runs the organization Every Nation I had mentioned earlier.

I know taking the desires of my heart and walking them out is not always going to be on a clear road to see what lies ahead of me. I know the experiences that have gotten me here will lead me further than I could ever imagine. And that makes me want to continue to walk further in my faith to see where I end up.

Stay encouraged and keep walking to see where your path may lead you…