Following God Wherever He Leads
Whether it’s acceptance to a prestigious Air Force program or the mission fields of Kenya, Cornerstone senior, Caleb Walker, is trusting God to write his story. Today, he shares about answered prayers and hopes to one day fly for Christ, bringing the Good News of the Gospel to the ends of the earth … Acts 1:8.
A little over a year ago, if you had asked me what I wanted to do after high school, I would have looked at you with a blank stare and said something along the lines of, “I have absolutely no idea.” However, the past year has been an incredible testament to the Lord’s faithfulness and mercy because I have seen how the Lord has opened countless doors in my life as well as given me incredible opportunities to learn more about Christian aviation.
Just like many other seniors, I was praying that the Lord would show me where He should have me next year and prepare me for a path to Glorify Him. With senior year drawing closer to its end, I truly believe that the Lord is preparing a path for me to go into aviation. There are three particular ways in which God directed my focus to aviation: my IMPACT trip to Ecuador, Acceptance to the Aim High Flight Academy, and the Senior Legacy Project required by all graduating seniors.
Making an IMPACT
As I was on my IMPACT mission trip in Ecuador last year, the Lord truly opened my eyes to aviation. Our team was doing a project at Nate Saint's old house and did maintenance work there. In the back of my mind, I had been thinking about Nate Saint and how he was a missionary pilot and just found it interesting that we were at the very house that he went to and did mission work. I have great memories from that IMPACT trip, but the one that stands out by far was the moment I walked into that aircraft hangar and instantly felt as though the Lord revealed a glimpse of my future career. It was a very powerful moment for me and even though I had seen the Lord's hand throughout the trip, I heard His voice the clearest the moment I stepped foot into that hanger. I quickly became overwhelmed with the realization that my strongest desire to spread the Gospel and the love of Christ could effectively be done through the median of aviation. I came back from that mission trip with a newfound curiosity in aviation, and through my connection with our school, I was able to get into contact with Steve DeFrancesco, a captain for United Airlines and former board member of Cornerstone. He was then able to connect me to the General Director of the Fellowship of Christian Airline Personnel which led to countless connections with aviation ministries and organizations.
Open Doors and Open Skies
Mrs. Hood, our school counselor, sent out many scholarship opportunities for the class of 2024. She reached out and introduced me to the Aim High Flight Academy (AHFA), which is an aviation scholarship for a three-week introductory flight program at various universities across the world. The purpose of the program is to “inform, influence, and inspire the next generation of aviators and leaders.” As someone who has no experience or knowledge of flying, being able to enter a program and leave with a great understanding of how to become an aviator was an opportunity I simply could not ignore.
While my application lacked aviation knowledge, it reflected a desire to do what I felt the Lord was calling me to do. Two months later, I received news that I was among the 100 out of 16,000 applicants that got accepted into the program pairing me with USAFA and AFROTC cadets who are current Air Force members. They will provide mentorship about the various aviation professions and career fields and train us how to fly, and we receive up to 15 hours of flight time.
I give all the glory to God and praise and thank Him for this wonderful opportunity because apart from His sovereign will and plan in my life, I would not be where I am today.
“His will for my life is nothing short of the wonder-working power of our Heavenly Father.”
Senior Legacy Project
The Senior Legacy Project is a culminating project that challenges high school seniors to address a societal issue by becoming the hands and feet of Jesus and demonstrating His command to serve others with love. In addition, it is important for seniors to recognize the significance of the Christ-honoring legacy they leave behind.
My interest in aviation sparked from my IMPACT trip to Ecuador, led me to focus my Senior Legacy Project on partnering with Africa Inland Mission, an aviation ministry organization. During the week of spring break, I will be working with the Rendille people in Kenya where we will have the opportunity to distribute supplies and share the Gospel. I am at the beginning stages of a fundraising campaign, these funds will be able to aid the impoverished people of Kenya in whatever ways we can.
Wherever The Lord Leads
The next part of my story is still being written and I can not wait to see where the Lord takes me with this. My goal is to pursue commercial flying where I can spend a few years obtaining the proper training and experience necessary to fly under difficult conditions. My end goal, however, is to pursue Christian aviation and go into missionary flying. Truly, I desire to bring the Gospel to the ends of the earth. We live in an increasingly interconnected world, where two people from across the globe can openly communicate with a few simple clicks, yet there are still millions of individuals suffering from poverty.
What brings me the greatest sadness is that there are still many groups of people who have never heard the Gospel. Aviation stands as a modern method to fulfill the Biblical instructions of caring for the impoverished, manifesting love, meeting the needs of the marginalized, and being the hands and feet of Jesus. Whether in commercial flying or missionary flying, I hope to fly with one mission in mind, "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth". (Acts 1:8)
Click here to follow along as God continues to write Caleb’s story. We pray that this post has encouraged you to trust and follow God’s plan because He will never lead you astray. Are you trusting God in this season of your life? Is it difficult or does it come naturally to you? Leave your thoughts in the comments below, we’d love to hear from you.
Did you know studies show that children and teenagers who serve in their church are far less likely to walk away from their faith as they get older? For the Holmes family, serving is second nature. Be encouraged today that you are never too young (or too old), to make an impact through serving!
Thank you, grandparents and parents!
It was a fun evening of dancing and smiles.