The Christian Leaders Institute Education for Ministry Leaders
My name is Tony Brain, and I am grateful for the free Christian Leaders Institute education. I am a plumber and owner-operator of a small plumbing and remodeling business. Previously, I served in youth ministry for a total of ten years. Currently, I am training for a deacon position with our church family of eight years. For the last year, I sensed the Lord calling me to pursue seminary. So, here I am. My wife, Kelly Brain, and I have been married since 2001. Together we have three beautiful children, Hope 17, Gabriel 14, and Elijah 8. Presently, we live in Southern Oregon in the USA.
Early Life Conversion
I was born in 1979, the third of five boys. My parents were young believers at that time, both coming from broken homes. Without a healthy model, they struggled to build a healthy marriage and family.
I received Jesus at the age of six at a backyard Bible summer camp. I didn’t learn to read until I was 13 when my best friend’s mom tutored me through that summer. Even with the tutoring, reading was still a challenge. Sadly, it deterred me from the Bible. Due to the turmoil in my home, as I grew older, I was easily led astray by the world. Thankfully, God, being faithful, kept me from devastating choices.
My Faith Became Mine
I first met Kelly, my wife, working a summer job. After a few years of friendship, it became more serious. When we had been dating two years, Kelly started going to a college Bible study. There, she began rediscovering her love for the Lord. Kelly became insistent on going to church together. Therefore, to keep the peace, I reluctantly complied. Through many weeks of sitting with her, God’s Word began penetrating my hard heart. God’s kindness led me to sincere repentance.
It was in this season that God began drawing me into His Word and presence. The enemy pressed hard for several years, which pushed me to Jesus. There, I learned His supremacy, the power in His name and His blood, and the majesty of His presence!
Privileged to Serve
As stated previously, I served as a youth ministry leader for about ten years. My involvement with youth ministry began when the youth pastor at our church invited me to come to a youth leader meeting. I was encouraged to join the youth leadership team. Through the weekly Bible study and prayer meetings, God instilled a passion in my spirit to bring His message of hope to the youth. I also had the privilege of leading small Bible studies with Jr. High boys at the local coffee shop. Serving as a camp counselor for a couple of summers at a youth Bible camp was another part of my ministry.
A Christian Leaders Institute Education
Serving at First Baptist Church in Lakeview, Oregon, Kelly and I are in youth ministry and leading a high school Bible study in our home. Kelly also serves on the women’s ministry team. I am training to serve as a deacon on our deacon board. I am going to the Philippines on a short term mission trip in the spring of 2020. Kelly and our daughter, Hope, will be traveling with a small team to Poland to present a VBS program the following month.
My prayer is to get to the point where my will is wholly moved aside. Then, His will can move through me and use me in power for His good pleasure and glory. “And he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised” 2 Corinthians 5:15.
My hope with the Christian Leaders Institute education is to further His Kingdom. I enjoy encouraging people forward in their walk with the Lord. The Christian Leaders Institute education will help me develop my ability to disciple others. Thank you, CLI, for making this training available for those of us that are raising a family and don’t have the funds to pursue a university education otherwise.
Learn about ordination with the Christian Leaders Alliance.