Melissa Peña

What is your favorite thing to do?

Walk the beach at sunset

 How would you describe the word “community?”

I would describe community as a group of people who know & love each other through the good, the bad, the awesome, the ugly. In community, we can be real with one another, gently correct each other, encourage one another, remind each other of truths from scripture, humbly learn from one another, praise the Lord together, share stories of what God has done, pray for one another, forgive each other, grow to be more like Christ, & hopefully represent His sacrificial love to the world around us.

Can you tell a story of where you recently saw GOD at work around you, through you, or in you?

I recently saw God at work in, around, & through me this Easter as a friend & I shared our testimonies in front of our church. God challenged me outside of my comfort zone to be vulnerable as well as face my fear of public speaking. What was most awesome though, was to see the daughter of the man who shared his testimony get baptized after she had seen God’s love in his life as well as her own. Another place where I’ve seen God’s work around me is through the new Christian club starting at Estancia High. God has brought His people closer to Him & closer together to share His love with the students & staff there. I’m so thrilled for what God has in store with that.

Favorite food? 

Hmmm, hard to pick just one… I’ll go with tacos, chips, apples, & ice cream 🙂

What is the worst thing or embarrassment that happened to you as a child (think funny anecdote)?

As a high schooler, I was in a super small, quiet, & crowded waiting room after taking an exam at Irvine Valley College. I thought it was kind of awkward that everyone was so quiet and so close together. “O well, I’ll just lean back into this wall,” I thought. Next thing I realize, Instead of backing into what I thought was the wall, I’m backing into the cutest guy from high school who was just standing there in shock. I started cracking up & was like, “dude, why didn’t you say anything!” Not super embarrassing, but hilarious nonetheless.

Favorite Bible verse? Why?

“Trust the Lord with all your heart & lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him & He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 I picked this verse in 5th grade and it’s been a simple yet strong reminder ever since to follow Jesus in everything especially when I don’t understand, to surrender my will, trust Him, & know that His way is the best. So far, it truly has been 🙂 He’s pretty awesome.