You see, about a year ago, my spiritual hero, Christine Caine, launched a new ministry to women called Propel Women. I connected immediately and have enjoyed the resources and encouragement that have come from this movement. When they introduced Propel Chapters and were looking for leaders, I decided to check into it but at the time, our church wasn't in the size they were looking for in the process of launching this new movement. No problem, I get it! Flash forward about 9 months and a friend of mine shared with me that she was starting a Propel Group at her church and strongly encouraged me to apply to do the same. So I did...or thought I did. This past March, I went to the Propel website and clicked at the top where it says "Chapters" and applied to be a leader. At first my plan was to just do this little thing in my home or in a coffee shop with some friends. But when I received my approval email, emotions got the better of me and I shared with my pastor that I was starting a Propel Chapter and through a brief discussion, we decided to do this at the church. Propel is all about celebrating the passion, purpose and potential of every woman and to help propel her forward into the leadership she is called to fulfill whether it be in the home, in the boardroom or in ministry.
The next week, my pastor and I had another brief conversation about creating an internship program through the church and that he wanted it to primarily focus on giving women who are called into ministry a place to learn and grown in the practical avenues of ministry, and he wanted me to be the face of the program. While it scared me to death it very much excited my heart and I began to feel a fresh wind in my sails.
Just a couple of days after this conversation, God radically changed my thought process on a prayer I had been praying for 15 years, reminded me of a prayer I prayed when I was 18 years old and then placed me in a room full of women at a retreat where I heard yet another message about the need for women to step up and be better at mentoring one another. It seems I am not escaping a message God had for me!
So I was preparing for the launch of our Propel Chapter and just sort of asked God how all of this would fit with my position as youth pastor...I can't explain why that question and prayer came to me but it did.
The week before our first Propel meeting, I met with the friend who had really encouraged me to do this. Not that it took much encouragement because I already was interested but this was all about timing. As she and I sat in a local coffee shop for more than 3 hours just chatting and sharing things God was doing, she leaned over, tapped my Propel leader guide and said, "When this takes off for you...because it will...do you see yourself transitioning out of youth ministry?" I just laughed! I told her I was already asking God how this would all work and that I was going to be open to whatever God had in store.
THE VERY NEXT DAY at the end of our weekly staff meeting at church, my pastor dismissed the rest of the staff and ask me to stay. What he said next almost knocked me out of my chair. "How do you see Propel and youth mixing? Do you see yourself transitioning from youth to be able to mentor women?"
OKAY, GOD! YOU'VE COMPLETELY GOT MY ATTENTION!!!
Again, I just laughed! I shared with him what had been discussed the day before and immediately plans began to roll. The next day we not only had approval from our board to move forward but my brother and sister-in-law agreed to accept the youth pastor position in my place, freeing me up to move forward in this venture.
There is so much more that I could share about this month and how God has been showing me consistently that I am on a new path...On Sunday, May 1, it was announced at GCFirst that over this month, I will be transitioning from youth pastor to discipleship pastor with the focus being on helping women step into the calling in the fullness God intends. And my heart is overwhelmed with a holy anticipation of what is to come and my nerves are on high-alert and my prayers are audacious. The restlessness I have been feeling for 3 years has begun to shift to excitement and I feel like I have new life and breath in my lungs!
I will miss being directly connected to the students I have served for the past few years but I am so excited to begin a new direction of pouring into the future of ministry and I believe that what is starting now will be a catalyst for greater things to come.