Jon on Echo Peak in Lee Metcalf Wilderness, southwestern Montana.
Nationality: American. Occupation: Account Manager for Zinpro, a livestock trace mineral company. Missions with C4C: Kilimanjaro 2018.
How long have you climbed? I spent a lot of time hiking and hunting in the mountains with my dad growing up. It really became a passion in 2014 when I started guiding youth with Lat45 Adventure Ministries. I now spend over 20 nights per year in the backcountry of Montana’s wildernesses. Type of climbing you do: Hiking, mountaineering. Highlight of climbing career: Echo Peak, my first peak to summit with the youth I was leading. God made it clear to me on top of that mountain, if I pursue Him, He will fill the desires of my heart.
How long have you been a Christian? Since I was a young boy, but I recommitted my life to Christ in 2007. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: Board member and volunteer guide for Lat45 Adventure Ministries, a ministry that uses adventures in God’s creation to teach young people.
Favorite Scripture verse (and why): Isaiah 40: 27-31 and Philippians 4: 4-13. Both passages are a reminder how we should live our lives by not complaining, grumbling, doubting or worrying, but in everything looking to God. They are also great verses to remember while hiking/climbing a mountain. Don’t worry about the unknown, doubt, and complain, but think about things that are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and worthy of praise. It is amazing how this can help climbing a mountain, literally or figuratively, in life.
Special “God moment” you’d like to share: There have been many times while leading young men in the backcountry that are very special to me. Like the 13-year-old boy, who God used to convict me, on my first trip ever (also my first time really serving). He had more courage than most adults to talk about his faith. Or the time we had a group of seven young men all with hard stories and battling some tough stuff and some of them had what I call the “I quits,” but through encouragement and prayer (lots of prayer), they kept going and finished. Not only did they get to the top, but once there many of them shared their testimonies. But the biggest “God moment” for me was on a mission trip to Nepal. We were sharing the Gospel with three ladies when a male relative showed up; they got scared and wanted us to stop. I prayed while the leader I was with turned the conversation to this man. God softened his heart and the man and two of the ladies prayed for salvation.
What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? This will be my first experience with Climbing For Christ. I was searching the Internet for something like this, and am excited to be a part of the team. I have had the privilege to go on two previous mission trips (not with C4C) and know there is a need for people willing to go to hard-to-reach places and C4C is serving to fill that need.