My name is Ryan Stokes and I am seeking ministry knowledge and training at Christian Leaders Institute. I am currently located in the southeastern region of the United States in Louisiana, close to the Mississippi State line. It seems the media and our leaders have all but gotten away from allowing any Christ-centered education, literature, etc to be publicized. People are more worried about offending someone or some other culture than they are with trying to lead someone to eternal life through Jesus Christ.
I came to know the Lord at an early age. I was raised in a typical southern Christian home, we attended church on Sundays and Wednesdays and I was always involved with the many activities for the children and youth growing up. I was a young pre-teen when I heard the testimony of one of the youths in our church about what had touched her heart on a youth trip they had just returned from. This testimony touched me in a way that I will always remember, triggering me to give my life to the Lord.
My ministry dream is to somehow make the Gospel available to all. Just as I have found this amazing training online at Christian Leaders Institute, I think it would be possible to reach out to the lost souls of the world in some of the same ways. I guess you could say my dream in ministry is to reach as many people as possible and to lead as many people as I can to the Lord. To help coach them on how to be better Christians and then how they themselves can effectively lead others to Christ. Imagine how amazing that would be!
This class has shown me new, more effective ways to study my Bible, to lead my family in devotions and to be a better leader for them and anyone around me. I am just starting my education and my confidence in Christ is growing. I cannot wait to see where it is when I complete my training, and even long after. I would have to say I identify more with the title of Pastor at this time. I feel compelled at the moment to gear my ministry toward the youth with everything that’s going on in the Country as they will be our future leaders. But at the same time, I want to share the Gospel with all ages.
The experience that really prompted me into ministry I think may be pretty unique. As I mentioned earlier I grew up in a Christian household. As we grew older, my older brother strayed away from God, actually claiming to be an Atheist. Trying to talk to him about it made me feel uncomfortable because it seemed as though he had researched and learned so much (of course, this was all in favor of atheism) and I had not. This concerned me so much that I began studying and learning everything I could as I sought to gain Biblical and ministry knowledge. Even studying atheism, so that I could see it from his perspective and ultimately find a more effective way to lead him to Christ. Somewhere in the middle of all my studying, I felt a calling to Ministry. It seemed what I was doing was just right.
My scholarship at CLI will greatly impact the ministry knowledge I can gain to further my ministry dream. Without it, I don’t see a time in the near future that I could obtain any education even close to it. Please pray for my understanding and patience as I continue my education to better my ministry. Pray that I will always stay strong and continue to receive support where I need it the most. That I will always humble myself and allow Christ to use me as he sees fit. May I always remember that His will, not mine, be done.
Learn about ordained minister study programs at Christian Leaders Alliance.