One of our featured camp meeting speakers this month is Pastor Kameron DeVasher. His dynamic preaching during the 2011 Generation of Youth for Christ (GYC) conference and last month’s Anchors of Truth series gave us a glimpse of a man who’s passionate about sharing Jesus with people of all ages.
Be One to Reach One?
Born and raised in Madison, Tennessee, Pastor Kameron says he was very blessed to be raised in the consistency of a stable home and an Adventist community. “I had the opportunity to attend Adventist schools,” he says, “but although I liked religion, I didn’t have the desire to be a pastor. Instead, I wanted to be an academy Bible teacher—you know, the guy who teaches Bible during the day and always shows up to play ball with the guys on rec night.
“I guess I also had the impression that to reach one you had to be one—if I wanted to reach kids, I had to sort of be a goofy kid myself. So I had funny hair, sorta knew what was cool on iTunes, and tried to blend in with the kids. But I soon faced several problems: First, I was the pastor of the Academy Church, and that meant I had to preach (while trying to get away with being funny); second, I realized that while some people liked me all right, no one was particularly falling in love with the Lord!
“During that time I didn’t tell people I watched 3ABN,” he admits a bit sheepishly. “After all, it wasn’t a popular thing with kids that age. But one Friday evening I saw a man preaching with passion. That’s fantastic! I thought. Too bad young people won’t listen to him. Then the camera panned the audience and I saw hundreds of young people! Who are they? I wondered, and how can I make this happen here?”
The program was 3ABN’s first broadcast of the GYC conference, and by the next year, Pastor Kameron began bringing an ever-growing number of students to their conferences.
What God Expects
“When people talk about the youth leaving the church, I think it’s a bit of a misnomer,” Pastor Kameron says. “How can they leave something they’ve never really been in? They can never leave the church because they’ve never joined it!
“I also think we’ve expanded the age limits of youth beyond the bounds of propriety to mean anyone from 18 to 35. At the same time, we’ve dropped the expectation that they should ever spiritually grow up! Society expects them to get tattoos and piercings, drink, and take no responsibility for their actions—in other words, the world expects young people to be stupid. However, God’s expects them to grow up! Just look at Jeremiah 1, where he complains about not wanting to be a prophet because of his youth. God says, in essence, ‘Don’t use your youth and inexperience as an excuse for not doing what I want you to!’ ”
Although he says he’s grateful for the opportunity to work with youth, Pastor Kameron is equally grateful for all he learned from the retired missionaries and administrators he pastored in Avon Park, Florida. “And now I’m enjoying working with the Muskegon and Fremont churches here in western Michigan,” he adds. “I want to be a Navy Seal for the Lord—ready for any situation He drops me into!”
Besides studying his Bible, he enjoys writing and spending time outdoors with his wife Emilie and their 20-month-old son Henry.
He prefers to do evangelistic work every week. “Evangelism needs to be in our DNA!” he says. “I encourage our members to invite someone each Sabbath to come hear a new piece of truth.”
Pastor Kameron’s passionate love for Jesus is reflected by his enthusiasm, and we praise God for his ministry to his churches—and to 3ABN’s worldwide audience!