The OC Register has an article about one of our speakers at the PDYM Student Leadership Conference last week. Pretty compelling stuff – what a night and what a story. Here’s a clip:

At 15, Nick officially thanked God that he was alive. At 17, he gave his first talk to a prayer group. The requests to speak snowballed. And now, at 23, that’s all he does. His nonprofit is called Life Without Limbs.

“‘Hey, look. I’ve got no arms and legs, what are you complaining about?’ That’s not the message,” he told the crowd at Leesa’s house. “I’m not here to say I understand your pain.”

His mission is encouraging people not to give up; being a living example that struggle leads to strength; and sometimes making people laugh. (“This boy came up to me and goes ‘WHAT HAPPENED!?’ I go, ‘CIGARETTES!’ I love to freak kids out.'”)

Most of his travels are through Third World countries, places where people like him often are abandoned at birth, left to die.

Before the night was over, Leesa asked her 30 or so guests to gather around Nick in the living room and lay hands on him. Prayers were said.

“If you leave here without a hug, I’m going to run after you,” he said. “And if you run fast, I’m gonna get someone to throw me at you.”

The evening with Leesa led to an invitation to speak at a youth conference at Saddleback Church later in the week. Next Sunday he will speak at Mission Hills Church in Mission Viejo.

“It turns out having no arms and legs has gotten me into some doors I would not have been able to walk through.”