Alumni Events

Why Am I Here?

Quinton Cools October 25, 2017
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Two weeks ago, 100 students, parents, and TeenPact staff arrived in our nation’s Capital. Students came by planes and trains, short car rides and multi-day caravans. We had early mornings and late nights, lots of D.C. METRO rides and hours and hours of training sessions, tours, and small group campaign exercises. We gathered for Back to D.C., an event chock full of some of our oldest and best traditions.


Experiencing Washington, D.C. with TeenPact is an experience like no other. Sure, we got to visit the U.S. Capitol, the Supreme Court, the Library of Congress, and so many other neat locations. Sure, we got to see President Trump in person and listened to sessions from other leaders of our nation. But do you know what really mattered most to our students? We asked them how God met them this week. Here are a few of their responses:



“God met me this week in the people around me. I’ve always struggled with finding Christian friends that I can truly connect to and on the first night asked my travel group leader, Amelia, to pray for me in forging those relationships. I’m so grateful to now be surrounded by so many amazing and supportive people.” – Student from Maryland



“God showed me that a leader doesn’t need to be recognized or the face of a campaign. I have never won a TeenPact election at a State Class or any other event. This week God told me to let that go and watch Him work. As the Campaign Manager, I was given the opportunity to direct others– to prepare my candidate– to step back and watch God work through those around me. And for the first time, we won.” – Student from Kentucky



“This week the Lord really showed Himself to me in ways I never expected. I struggled with the question, “why am I here” for the first few days. But then the Lord began to reveal Himself, particularly through worship, and I began to sense a greater broadness to that question, and I clearly heard the voice of God say, “Why are you here?” Not, “why are are you at TeenPact,” but “why are you here, on this earth?” And I was convicted so deeply of how I’ve forgotten that I am only here to bring glory to the Lord, and that I haven’t been seeking his purpose for my life as I should be. This week I am thankful for God’s grace, and am going home strengthened in my walk with Christ.” – Student from Mississippi



Identity. Community. Humility. It’s all there. This week changed our students in some incredible ways, and we’re only just now hearing some of the stories. There are so many more stories to tell, and we look forward to the Lord continuing the work that He started this week.


On the second-to-last day of the event, we walked through the D.C. monuments and memorials at sunset, starting from the Washington Monument and visiting several war memorials along the way. As it grew dark, we concluded our evening tour with a guitar and 100 voices singing praises to our God. Where were we standing? At the Lincoln Memorial, in the heart of our nation’s Capitol. As several students shared later, this week at Back to DC reminded us that God exists, that He is with us, and that He is faithful– always faithful. Praise God!



About the Author

Quinton Cools

Quinton Cools grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and like any true Oregonian, he can identify the perfect cup of coffee. Quinton’s love for… Read More