My Testimony: God Qualifies the Called
I am from the United States of America. Looking for a Christian college to get a degree, I found the Christian Leaders Institute with its tuition-free Bible classes and ministry training.
My Early Years
Growing up in Portland, Oregon, religion was not only missing in our family, it was missing in our community. The examples around me were of the world, not of God. We were taught that Christians were “religious fanatics” and that discussing religion was rude. Further, to do so would inevitably marginalize someone else, and we were to pretend to care about that. Our goals were to represent a merit-based lifestyle. It was: go to school, get good grades, get into a good college (University or Ivy, preferably, of course), get a degree, have a shiny career where you will work your way up the corporate ladder, and then maybe have kids and show them how to repeat the cycle.
However, I felt alone and empty for as long as I can remember. I looked at the dreams my parents had for me and knew there had to be more. I knew my heart was missing something that seemed to be searching for me, too. Yet, I had no idea what it was or how to obtain it.
We were a low-income family with two working parents, one a hairdresser and the other a construction worker. Both had no college education. My parents’ good intentions landed me in an out-of-district school surrounded by the privileged families they desperately wanted me to conform to. I was like a fish out of water. So, I kept my head down and graduated high school with honors.
Changes and Challenges
Thankfully, Southern Oregon University accepted my application. It was the farthest college from home I could go to while still paying “in-state” tuition. For the first time in my life, I was no longer under the oppressive influence of my parents. It only took two semesters to realize I didn’t want to be there. But I also had no idea what I wanted. Furthermore, that emptiness still permeated my life.
Therefore, I dropped out of college, moved back to Portland, and got qualified to work as a Certified Nursing Assistant. Shortly afterward, I moved to California. I quickly married my boyfriend before he deployed with the United States Marine Corps. It was a common practice as the benefits were overwhelmingly favorable for married couples. As a young wife living in a new state with no community support and no life experience, I fell into a pattern of anxiety and depression. Our marriage never developed a strong connection as the effects of the deployments and wars took their toll. Just one year after our wedding, we filed for divorce.
So, I moved back to my parents’ house and into my brother’s old bedroom (mine was a catch-all). I remember lying in bed and crying hysterically, believing this was all a result of my failures. Then, even though I had never prayed before, something called me to pray. I prayed for hours for help, love, forgiveness, and hope. Eventually, this calm came over me. I suddenly realized that having nothing left to lose would be so freeing! I needed to release myself from feeling obligated to live by anyone else’s will other than God’s. All of my actions going forward were to be a testament to Him. I would walk in atonement and never go a day without prayer and thanksgiving again.
Shortly after this revelation, I moved out and away from the toxic lifestyle I knew. I got a fantastic job where I met my future husband. We moved to a place more closely aligned with our values and started a family. We built a life of spiritual substance and raised our children in a relationship with God. I was a stay-at-home mom for years and was completely fulfilled in my role. But God was still pushing me to do more. To tell my story and give others the gift I had found through Him.
Bible Classes and Ministry Training at CLI
I always wanted to finish my degree. However, it wasn’t until the Christian Leaders Institute that I felt the connection between my goal and God’s will. Being a Christian Leader will enable me to make a small impact on repaying a debt I could never afford. The Bible classes and ministry training equip me for wherever God leads me.
At first, I felt utterly unqualified and ashamed of my past to pursue this life. However, when I feel this way, I remember 1 Corinthians 2:1-5: “When I came to you, brothers and sisters, announcing the mystery of God to you, I did not come with brilliance of speech or wisdom. I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. My speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not be based on human wisdom but on God’s power.” It’s simple: God doesn’t call the qualified; He qualifies the called!
Register a Study Account
Register for a free study account, automatically enrolling you in the Getting Started Class at the Christian Leaders Learning Platform. The Getting Started class will take you less than an hour to complete.
When you log in to the Learning Platform, you will notice that the Getting Started Class automatically appears on your dashboard.
The Getting Started Class will orientate you to the Christian Leaders Learning Platform and the Programs offered, including:
- Ministry Awards, Certificates, Diplomas, and Degrees with the Christian Leaders Institute.
- Minister Credentialling (Ordination) with the Christian Leaders Alliance, including local Soul Center registration possibilities.
Note: You can enroll in tuition-free courses or mini-courses immediately without finishing the getting started class.
Find out more about women in ministry here.