Read how CLI has made it possible for a disabled single mom to pursue her associate ministry calling.
Associate Ministry Calling
My name is Tanya Mulneix and I have an associate ministry calling on my life. I am blessed to be from the United States where we may worship and serve God freely. I accepted Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior when I was 10 years old at my church’s Christmas play. I was raised in a very legalistic and strict manner. We had too many rules for “being a good Christian” to list or remember them all. I lived under “the law” throughout my childhood.
I felt God calling me into ministry as a child, but when I discussed it with my parents I was told I couldn’t be called into ministry because I was a girl. I wasn’t allowed to ever be a spiritual leader. “Maybe you can marry a pastor or missionary” was my parent’s response. Yet, my brother’s calling was celebrated, and he preached his first sermon at 10 years old.
Because of my strict upbringing and knowing I could never live up to those standards, at 16, I rebelled. I started dating the wrong people, wearing “taboo” clothes, makeup and painting my nails – everything I wasn’t allowed to do. I ended up with a teen pregnancy, which ended in a miscarriage and severe depression. I tried to kill myself, but God wasn’t finished with me. I joined the US Army. I loved being in the army until a superior officer raped me. I didn’t tell anyone what happened to me for several years.
My long road to healing from the miscarriage (and two more miscarriages before I was able to have my children) and the rape brought me back to God. But this time, I was taught that we are no longer under the law, but that we are covered by His grace. I also felt God’s associate ministry calling on my life again to minister to and help others. My ministry dream is to be an Associate Pastor or Chaplain or Christian counselor. I want to work behind the scenes helping people with and through their biggest challenges in life and directing them to the love and grace of Jesus.
In December 2017, my family and I started at a new church. We had been happy at our old church and weren’t looking for a new one. But I am a low-income, single mom of 3 teens, and I found a program at another church helping low-income families with Christmas gifts. I had no gifts for my children, so I inquired on the process for the gifts. Requirements were that I had to attend 2 church services; one to register for the gifts and one to pick them up. I almost didn’t go, because I was dedicated to the church we had been attending and the children and I served on several teams. I prayed about it, and the kids and I went to the new church. Our first Sunday there they were holding baptism. My son (who is autistic, struggles to fit in, been saved for 8 years, and was never comfortable enough to be baptized) wanted to be baptized that day. It blew me away. We returned 2 weeks later to get the gifts, and it was another great service. After praying for those 2 weeks, I knew this was the church where we belonged.
As I got to know my Pastor, he encouraged me more and more to pursue my associate ministry calling. He directed me to Christian Leaders Institute and has really encouraged me along the way. I didn’t think I could ever pursue a ministry education. I am a disabled, single mom. I barely have enough food or gas to get through a month. Paying for education wasn’t an option. I had applied to go to Liberty but was told that I couldn’t get student loans to pay for my education because I collect Social Security Disability. CLI has made a way for me to pursue my ministry calling and dreams. Without CLI, I wouldn’t be walking the path God set out for me. I would still be running from God’s plan and feeling I could never be what He wants me to be.
I feel my walk with God has been strengthened through this course because I’m no longer trying to hide from God. I am seeking His will and striving to do His work. It has also brought me and my teens closer to God. They are fully supportive of my educational and ministerial goals and look forward to their own ministries. I am open to relocation as the Lord prompts and leads me.
Learn about ordination with Christian Leaders Alliance.