Leeann James, Forerunner (2018)
When Leeann decided to apply for HVLE, she felt very lost and unsure of her future. Like all of us, she knew she had made many mistakes, but she also knew God was "tugging on her heart" and that he had a big plan for her life. What she did not expect was the level of excellence and leadership God would pull out of her in the process. After completing her first year, she was named (by peer selection and staff confirmation) the first ever HVLE Forerunner, a new award given on an annual basis to the student who exhibits all-around achievement in leadership, academics, heart, discipline, and Christian service.
To close the year, Leeann offered the following statements: "During this year, I have seen how the things I went through [in the past] were used as tools to help younger girls in youth... [I was able] to speak life into them so that they would be able to avoid the choices that I had made earlier in my life. But to be that person that I needed when I was their age—to encourage and point them back to Jesus—is a huge blessing, and now I would not change my story for anything. I have gained confidence in myself and in who God has called me to be. I am no longer anxious about my future but am excited to see where God will take me."
Max Hilton, 3rd Year Graduate (2017)
When Max decided to apply for the internship program, he had only been following Christ for a few months. Although he had just been radically saved from a background of addiction, he instinctively knew that God had a plan for his life. He was unsure how it all might play out, but armed with a passion for music and a desire to learn, Max leaped into internship ready to pursue whatever God might have for his life. He quickly realized that the Lord was calling him to lead worship, and he made it his personal goal to be a part of the Higher Vision live worship recording. His dream was realized a few weeks before Graduation Day.
At Graduation, Max declared before Higher Vision Church, “These past three years I’ve learned some of the most important lessons of my life. One of which is being excellent in every area... whether that be worship ministry, or youth ministry, or everything in between. I’ve also been blessed to build relationships with so many people... and to serve on the Higher Vision live recording team. I’m just so blessed to be able to serve here, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.” He also said, “Because worship is more than just music, I’ve learned how to truly worship God, how to lead people into his presence, and how to let His Spirit take control. It’s about sacrificing your desires to God and coming boldly before His throne.”