Cedarville students witness light in a city of darkness: D.C. GO Trip Part 1

By Julia Swain

The first thing I noticed about the city of Washington D.C. is that it never stops moving– ever. 

Whether it’s in a park in the heart of the city, a Starbucks, or a charming bookstore, no one stops to have a conversation, check in to see how someone is doing, or offer even the simplest wave hello. 

Coming from a school where all of this is commonplace, this was a shock. 

It demonstrates the darkness that is so evident in D.C., a darkness that at times feels all-consuming. 

Yet, God is still working, still moving. 

He is working in churches like King’s Church, Aletheia College Park, Temple Hills Baptist, and Restoration, who are all faithful, Gospel preaching churches that are seeking to share the truth and the light that comes with believing in Jesus Christ. 

He is working in ministries such as Faith and Liberty, a Christian outreach to top-level government officials, ECHO USA, an English as a second language (ESL), information technology, and career support outreach program and Capitol Hill Pregnancy Center, which offers help to men and women in pregnancy crisis, which look to use their non-traditional roles in the city to share the Gospel and lead people to Christ. 

He’s even working through specific people, like Cedarville graduates working on Capitol Hill, and A.J. Clemans, who owns a Chick-Fil-A in Fairfax County, Virginia, in order to spread the Gospel in their vocations that exist outside of full-time ministry. 

Seeing how lost this city is can be discouraging, but God used this feeling to motivate every opportunity our team had during our trip to proclaim His name and learn from these faithful churches, people and ministries. 

As we went about our week, it was abundantly clear how God was providing for us, and how near He was amidst our weariness. When we were weak, He was strong. When we could feel our hearts growing disheartened, He found ways to lift us up. 

We saw a woman commit her life to Christ for the first time at the University of Maryland. We listened as the pastors at Restoration and Temple Hills Baptist told us how they pray individually for each one of their church’s members. And we heard how God has worked and is still working in each of the ministries that we visited. 

The passion for the Gospel that each person we talked to showed stuck out to be throughout the trip. Growing weary and disheartened in their pursuits to spread the Gospel would be so easy yet they are so filled with joy and love for the city of D.C. 

Leaving on Saturday was incredibly hard as we all felt that our work in the city was just getting started. However, we were comforted in the knowledge that the Lord is still moving and still working through all of the incredible churches and ministries in the greater DMV (D.C., Maryland and Virginia) area. 

(Matthew 9:37, ESV) “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few,” so perfectly describes the city of D.C. Through God’s grace and provision, it is our hope and prayer that the laborers already in the city of D.C. will continue to strive to share the Gospel with boldness and do so faithfully for the sake of Kingdom growth. 

Julia Swain is a sophomore journalism student and the on-campus news editor for Cedars. She enjoys listening to Taylor Swift, watching any Cleveland sports team and hates using the oxford comma. 

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