After divinity school, I dreamed I would be working full time in a church and only be a few years away from serving God overseas. However, instead of one full time ministry position, I spread my time between three part time jobs, my husband, my dog, my friends, my blog, and keeping my dreams alive.
When God brought Adam and I together, our passions matched, and my timeline changed. While he earns his Master of Public Health degree, I will continue to serve where God places me “for such a time as this.” Eventually, we’ll follow God to the land that God will show us. We are still seeking God’s guidance as to where we ultimately serve on mission.
Prior to going to overseas, I have a dream of serving once again in a Baptist congregation. For now and for while Adam is in school, I have the honor of serving in the midst of a mission minded, hospitable Methodist congregation. I’ve learned to love a new set of hymns, internalized creeds, navigated my way through a different church polity and hierarchy, learned more about John Wesley, and come to appreciate a new tradition. Still at the end of the day, I now know, more than ever, why I still hold true to many Baptist traditions: believer’s baptism by immersion, separation of church and state, and the ability for each church to govern itself.
My gender continues to be a major barrier to being hired by a Baptist church. Unfortunately, many Baptist congregations are not open to hiring a female minister. Thankfully, I was ordained by a Baptist church, graduated from a Baptist divinity school, and have served in two Baptist churches. My dream is one day that all congregations will acknowledge that God calls individuals, both male and female. I am thankful for organizations like Baptist Women in Ministry (BWIM) who help me and other women keep our dreams of being a pastor, within Baptist congregations, alive!
What dreams are you trying to keep alive? How are you overcoming the barriers to seeing your dreams become a reality? I would love to read your responses in the comments or have a conversation with you about this topic!