Ministry Training Quest
My name is Stephanie Atkins, I am 41 years old and I am on a ministry training quest. I reside in the United States in rural Kentucky with my husband John. My parents divorced when I was five years old and my single dad acquired custody of me and we moved in with my grandparents. My mother chose Florida and I didn’t see her again till I was 10 years old. My daddy saw to it that I went to church every Sunday as a child even though he didn’t go with me. I walked to the altar of Crestwood Baptist Church when I was 11 years old as the church sang the chorus, “I have decided to follow Jesus.” I somehow knew the rollercoaster that was about to become my life was going to take the first of many tragic turns. If I was going to have any hope of making it, I needed the saving grace of the Almighty.
First, I lost my paternal grandfather when I was only 12 and I was in the house when they found him two days after Thanksgiving in 1989. I married when I was in high school at 17 when my mother came back from Florida and decided to make me marry. I did but we lost our beautiful little angel girl, Aleen Nicole, in the beginning of my fifth month. After the loss of my child, my husband became abusive physically, mentally and every other way imaginable until I had no choice but to die at his hand or leave. In the year 2000, my father suddenly died in June. Two months after the death of my father, we found out my mother was terminally ill with bone, lung and kidney cancer. In November, my 92-year-old grandmother that raised me after the divorce went to be with Jesus, and in January of 2001 only two months after her passing, my mother lost her battle with cancer. Before she left this earth, however, I got to hear her say the sinner’s prayer and was saved on her death bed. I lost all of my family in a matter of 7 months time, and I felt lost. Little did I realize that their poor life choices took them from me, and God had different plans for a ministry training quest in my life.
My ministry dream, and what fuels my ministry training quest, is to help as many suffering souls as possible. The bereaved, down trodden, grief struck, and also those who are happy and have found God’s abundance in the form of the love of their life. I desire to preserve the sanctity of marriage the way God created it. I want to hold hands with those who are lost in the vast abyss of the great gulf of grief. By sharing my faith and testimony, maybe God will entrust me to lead a precious soul to the knowledge and peace of a loving, comforting, forgiving God.
I have thoroughly enjoyed the getting started class here at CLI as I pursue my ministry training quest. It has opened my eyes to the spiritual vision, dreams and walks of others in ministry. I would venture to say small groups are my forte for ministry. I like being able to give as much individualized, spiritually grounded attention as possible to those in need. My recent wedding was a defining moment of “I want to perform weddings and funerals.” I want to provide sound Godly counsel and give couples a straight path based on the Word of God on which to plant their married feet.
While encouragers and mentors for my ministry training quest are few, I do have the support of Jesus and an amazing husband who is 31 years my senior. This scholarship couldn’t have come at a better time. Now I can do God’s will and purpose for my life with the proper education in my ministry training quest. I feel like I might finally be able to make a difference in this world for Christ. Please pray that God will give me the words to speak to those who struggle so that God is glorified. I have recently started a grief support group in my area. All of this for God’s Glory that He be ultimately magnified and exalted.
Check out Christian Leaders Alliance to learn more about Ministry Ordination.