My story is God’s story, and though it may not seem spectacular, I know differently. His is a relentless pursuit of the human heart for His divine glory.
I grew up in a small Oklahoma town which is where I learned the truth about Jesus. I attended a summer camp called Falls Creek when I was going into the sixth grade. After acknowledging before everyone that I believed in Jesus as my Savior, I immediately had a hunger for God’s word. I took the devotional they gave me back to my cabin and began reading through the Bible like a thirsty toddler downs his sippy cup. I began reading through the entire Bible and felt like I could never get enough of it. I took notes during every sermon at church, and I attended every service that they offered. I was what you might call a good Christian girl, but a Pharisee in the making.
As I went through high school, I took in more of God’s word and loved the idea of sharing it with other believers. My youth minister gave me the opportunity to disciple other believers within the youth group. This was the beginning of my love of discipleship. I also had multiple opportunities to go on missions trips and leadership camps.
As a college student, I attended Oklahoma Baptist University where I had more chances to learn God’s word and pour into other believer’s hearts. I had mentors and chances to be a mentor. Those four years were some of the sweetest and yet hardest years. God continually molded me, chipping away at the perfectionism that had crept into my heart.
I met my husband while at OBU, and we got married before I graduated. In 2005 I graduated with a degree in family psychology and spent all summer looking for a job in this field. At the last moment, God gave me the opportunity to work at Red Rock Behavioral Health Services in a small town close to home. I worked with children who needed help learning basic skills to function well socially, emotionally, and educationally. Those three years were invaluable to me – relationally, professionally, and spiritually.
Eric and I had our first child in December of 2008. I remember praying for him to be a man who loved God and loved people and to be filled with the Spirit. This started my journey as a mother, a challenge more refining than anything else I’ve gone through in my life. Though I knew one day I’d settle down and have a family, I never dreamed of being a mother. The sanctification process never ends and neither does my need of God. We are now a family of five, raising three very different boys to one day be strong men of God.
As a couple we have had the opportunity to serve together, usually in the role of teaching. Eric and I worked with the youth in a Sunday school class and in discipleship while in Shawnee. We also taught Sunday school there and have been teaching ever since. Four years ago Eric felt God calling him to seminary, so we have since picked up our home and moved to the humid paradise of Houston, Texas! We don’t know where this journey will lead us, but we are open to His leading, whatever it looks like.
In the meantime, I am homeschooling our children (though this could change at any moment) and teaching in the women’s ministry department at our church. Although I was content to be a small group leader for the Bible study, I found myself in a teaching role, something which I was not seeking on my own. I have seen how God has taken my ambitions of teaching His word, stripped them down so that all glory goes to Him, and has given me opportunities to share His word, knowing that I’ll handle His glory rightly.
God has the power to change hearts, and He often does this through His word, revealing truth and sin. It is living and active. His word goes out and does not return void. In it we find out who He is and how we can live according to His ways. It is not something to be treated lightly, and so it is with great honor and fear that we teach what He’s revealed to us.
This is my story. This is God’s story. The relentless pursuit.