Wednesday, September 14, 2011


When I was 15 years old, my mother started attending a new church in the inner city. I'd have to tell you I wasn't crazy about going, if I were to be completely honest. The music was too loud. So were the people, for that matter. The youth group she insisted I attend was, well, flat out weird. I was embarrassed to bring my friends.

Eventually I settled in and made some friends, and, most importantly, I got to know who God was.

One of the people who most influenced me at that time was one of my youth leaders, Francine. She was beautiful, she had a great sense of humor {which goes a long way in my book!} and she was completely sold out for Jesus.

Sometimes, she would swing by after she got off work and pick me up early to go to church on Thursday nights. She would drive to the church and pick up this big, beat-up van. It must have been a 12 or 15 passenger van, because it was bigger than a minivan and only slightly smaller than a school bus. :) Then, she'd drive it into the ghetto and we would pick people up for youth group.

In the beginning, I hated going. I mean, I loved spending time with her, but I would have preferred it to be *alone*. I felt like these other kids were infringing on my time. (It aint pretty friends, but it's the truth.)

Then of course there was the fact that some of the neighborhoods weren't so great, and I was afraid we'd break down and get mugged. (These were in the days BEFORE we all had cell phones.)

But Francine didn't seem one bit concerned.

And after a while, I was friends with all those kids and wasn't concerned about the neighborhoods and didn't hate the music and didn't even mind sharing my time with Fran.

In fact, after a while, I remembering telling God how awesome I thought it was that Francince did that, and how neat I thought it would be if one day He would give *me* a big 'ol van and a bunch of kids to fill it up for church.

Can I just tell you, sometimes God has a funny way of answering our prayers?

Because now, I own a 15 passenger van, I am pregnant with our ninth child, and on a regular basis, that van is full of kids we have dedicated to God.

I share this for two reasons:

First, because it is awesome and it makes me smile. :)

And second, because I think there are a lot of us out there who have had some sort of dream in our lives seem to float away as life went on. Our gifts and talents are not being used in the way we may have imagined. But I believe that God has a beautiful way of merging our dreams for our life and His dreams for our life, and making them a masterpiece.

I'm not telling you to let go of your dreams, but I am telling you to hold them loosely. Let God mold them. Co-operate with Him. You'll never regret it.

~amy danielle


  1. What an encouraging post Amy Danielle (I am a youth pastor)! Thanks for sharing it x.

  2. That is a powerful testimony of love and commitment to the Lord and building His church!

  3. oh my dear amy, that is so cool! i love this story. i love how God answers our longings in ways we never imagined. bless you.


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