Name: Khumbo Banda (AGTS ’16)
Current occupation: Chi Alpha campus missionary to Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia
What brought you to Springfield?
I came to Springfield because I wanted to further my education and I felt the Lord leading me to AGTS in Springfield to get the best possible education.
How important was the community you found at AGTS?
I found a family at AGTS. I developed deep friendships and a community that supported me throughout my journey. I met people in Springfield who changed my life and who I call brothers and sisters. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without their influence.
What did you gain through your experience at AGTS?
At AGTS, I learned how to look at the Word differently. I gained knowledge about the historical context of the Bible, and through that context, I was able to look at the world differently. I learned how to apply scriptures to my experiences in this world.
AGTS’ motto is “Knowledge on fire.” I believe this relates to the marrying of education with the Pentecostal perspective, influenced by the Holy Spirit. Through my time at AGTS, I gained the skills needed to take complex theological elements and translate them into messages that people can understand and relate to.
I also gained a deeper understanding about the Assemblies of God fellowship. And it’s made me more confident that this is the group that I want to participate in and support.
How did God show up for you during your time at AGTS?
God grew me during the time I spent in Springfield. I was in a place of being discipled, and throughout my educational journey, I developed a new understanding of the way God works in our lives and in the lives of the real men and women we read about in the Bible.
How has your AGTS education helped you in your current ministry role?
I work with college students, many of them from broken homes and facing unbelievable difficulties. Often they are the only member of their family to attend college. The rate of depression and suicide is unbelievable. I’m one of the only minority pastors on campus, and I am able to set an example for these students of what it means to study God’s Word, to apply yourself, and to be a learner.
My degree matters. Students look at me and think, “If Khumbo can earn a master’s degree, then I can push myself to earn my own degree.” They recognize that I’m a black male who has an education, who’s made something of his life, and my degree gains their respect.
What would you tell a prospective student considering AGTS?
If you’re looking for a place that will challenge your thinking and deepen your understanding of the intricacies of the Word, go to AGTS. This is a place where you will grow, learn, and develop amongst a community that is like a family. You will come out a better person. I know I did.