Wednesday, July 15, 2009

12 Years In Ministry

I just realized today that this month marks the 12th year we have been in youth ministry. I was reminded by a guy who showed up at camp tonight who happened to be in our first youth group. I introduced my kids to him. I was pregnant with my oldest when we left that youth group 10 years ago. It seemed weird to do that and to see him so much older. It got me thinking about how much has happened this last several years.

I echo the words of Paul to Timothy
1Ti 1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry,

We started out at Petoskey Assembly of God. I remember driving over the hill as we came into town and seeing the bay and saying to John, "Are you kidding me, we get to live here!" I was so excited because not only was Petoskey easily the most beautiful place to live but that we were about to embark on what God had called us to do and that was minister to youth. We loved it there so much and we loved the kids. When we visit there I always selfishly ask God to let us come back.

We then went back down to the Detroit area to get some practical training working along side John's former youth pastor. It was a great size youth group and we made some wonderful friends. We learned a lot working with John Luttman. It was a great time of growth and learning.

We then moved to Sault Ste. Marie and all I can say is Brrrrrr. I am just kidding, well maybe just a little. The move to the Soo was so amazing because of how God worked out everything so perfectly(blog for another day). Our church was small and our youth group was even smaller. But in the short two years we were there I learned so much about church family and the importance of it. I learned that I needed to start opening my heart more to the body of Christ. In the Soo I met some of the most loving and dedicated people I have ever met. The kids were simply amazing too. John and I loved them dearly. Our hearts were broken when we left there; but God had other plans.

For the last seven years we have been in Gladwin, MI. This year marks the year that we have seen a student move through our youth group 6th - 12th grade. This has been amazing dynamic that we have never experienced before. We have been able to minister to kids there entire junior and high school life. What a privilege to be involved in that experience. There is something to be said of longevity in youth ministry. We really feel like we are at the beginnings of something great.

Now I have been saying "WE" a lot. I know that my hubby is the youth pastor, the ordained one. But we have always seen our ministry a team effort. We have always worked together. I love how we share in the calling God has place in our hearts. I am so excited that I get to do it with my best friend.

Ministry has been tough at times but the joys far out weigh the negatives. I get no greater joy than seeing our kids (I call our youth my kids...I just see them like that) at the altar worshiping our most high God. I get no greater joy than seeing three of our student becoming missionaries. I get no greater joy then seeing all of our youth grow in a deep relationship with our Jesus. I love ministry and there is nothing on this earth that would ever change that.

So thanks to all
our kids (don't be mad if I missed your name) Nathan, Holly, Monica, Jessicas, James, Jason, Karen, Mark, Jenilee, Robert, Josh, Elaine, Mike, Connie, Lynzie, Nathan, Lyndsay, Dominic, Heather, Phylisha, Travis, Dustin, Shelia, Mary, Jennifer, Trevor, Jenna, Justin, Nick, Lance, Rebecca, Krista, Shanna, Luke, Autumn, June, Cody, Brenda, Angela, Jill, Craig, Lance, Kristina, Joe, Nathan, Allsion, Katie, Rosa, Kaitlyn, Taylor, Jessica, Tim, Greg, Erin, Mike, and to the many more and the many more to come. Thank you for the opportunity to be even a small part of your lives. John and I count it a privilege.


  1. These are great reflections and pics. I liked it when you lived in Petoskey too because then we could come and visit you. But obviously, my absolute favorite was when you were with us in the Soo. That was like a dream and just as short. Congratulations on your 7 years in Gladwin. That is awesome. Perhaps you guys should see if the district would allow you to give talks on longevity in youth ministry. Could be very beneficial.

  2. Those pictures brought back memories for me, too! Isn't it an awesome feeling to reflect on God's goodness?


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