Favorite camp food?

I honestly don’t remember. But I can say meals were a great time for fellowship.

How did you decide to go on KDSM?

The choice to go was relatively easy because I wanted to do something awesome over the summer that would help me grow closer to the Lord. Ever since hearing about Cru Summer Missions from my brother when I was in high school, I wanted to experience it for myself! I didn’t really think about the results while applying — I just signed up, ready for whatever adventure would unfold. It wasn’t until I left home that the craziness of what I was doing hit me.

What did you learn by raising support?

It freaked me out! I learned it is all about trusting God, and it allows other people to be part of what God is doing in my life.

How did discipleship impact and equip you?

I really liked being part of a small group of people to whom I could open up. It was like God was telling me to trust the people He put in my life. Being vulnerable in discipleship helped me not to internalize my thoughts and feelings quite so much. When I went home and back to school, I was prepared to be intentional about friendships. I’ve been more proactive in asking people to hear me out so I don’t internalize everything.

How did evangelism experiences impact and equip you?

I thought it was cool that evangelism is basically listening to people. I was encouraged when I realized I can share the gospel by being myself because I’m naturally more of a listener. Approaching random students at the University of Cincinnati was definitely outside of my comfort zone, but this prepared me to initiate more gospel conversations when I returned to school. God has granted me the excitement and capability to share the gospel!

Talk to us about community.

I felt God’s love so powerfully through people because they were open, trusting, and understanding. They called me out as I wandered and asked if I wanted to sit down and talk. I felt comfortable with my quietness and openness at random times, and I didn’t feel the need to strive. The community established a vibe of genuine acceptance.

How have you seen yourself change because of KDSM?

At the beginning of KDSM, I realized I had a hardened heart, and God broke down my walls during the summer as I was challenged in discipleship to be more vulnerable. I’ve learned, when my heart is more open, God can walk around in my heart instead of being blocked. When I have more of Him, I experience joy and peace more fully.

How has your relationship with God changed?

I grew closer to God and realized what it truly means to rest in the Lord and to lean into Him for everything.

What’s your summer summary?

It was fun. Adventurous. Crazy. Intense. Challenging. Healing. Captivating. It was a new experience that revealed truth in my life.

Why should someone consider KDSM?

Because there are trees, kids, and community — everything awesome wrapped into one summer mission trip!

Shannon Kiley


Sonoma State University

Graduation year

Spring 2017