Tuesday, September 4, 2012

God Made Her Strong

 
God has knit my heart together with my cousin Amie's heart. 
We are both passionate about our family, Jesus, 
and mentoring among many other things.
I recently asked her to share about her passion for mentoring.
I'd like you to meet my cousin, Amie, and hear her heart today.

 
 
He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
Isaiah 40:29

God made me strong!

I’m not only talking the kind of strong that you learn from growing up with cousins on a farm. I am strong like that and can do heavy lifting, but it’s more than that. I’m strong headed.  I like to think that He created me to do heavy lifting with my brain as well. Now, if you ask my parents or the Jolly German (my husband), they will probably tell you about the downside to this, but I know it is a gift from the Lord.

Over five years ago, the Lord called me out of a strong position in the secular world to do full time ministry. My strong brain told me this wasn’t logical. I couldn’t go back to the salary I made when I graduated college and still make ends meet. There wouldn’t be enough money. I wouldn’t be challenged enough. But the reality is, the Lord’s ways aren’t always logical. My best friend showed me a video of the vision of the North Charleston DreamCenter and I couldn’t ignore it. North Charleston was 7th in the nation for violent crime per capita and it was only 15 minutes away from my house. I couldn’t sit back and ignore it.

I had no idea at that time what the Lord had in store. I stepped up to volunteer for 6 months and found myself leading Children’s Ministry. The funny thing about this is that I have no children. Here I am learning and teaching others about how to bring up a child in the ways of the Lord – yet I have never done it myself. Just another way the Lord uses the least of these and He sure did. The ministry grew from ground floor to just at 100 kids in 3 years before stepping aside to allow others the room to step into ministry.

I took a year off of Children’s Ministry to help establish the fundraising strategy of the Dream Center and in this time found my heart bending towards our e3 mentoring program. e3 (educate, elevate and empower) is a youth mentoring program that matches at-risk kids in middle and high school with professional and community mentors on a one-on-one basis. The mission is to help the youth become productive citizens who make positive contributions, good choices and love God.

The program was established in August 2009 to address the needs of the youth in our community and in 4 years, we have mentored an average of 35 students each year. By targeting issues such as staying in school, finding part time work, developing character and teaching students how to set goals we have been able to effect the community for generations.

The Impact
  • 100% of the Seniors enrolled in 2011 Program Graduated – 12 Students
  • · Graduation Rates at Local High School are Rising
2008-2009 @ 36.2%
2009-2010 @ 40.2%
2010-2011 @ 45.1%
  • Increased Student Exposure with Trips: Columbia, Myrtle Beach, Orlando, Cape Canaveral and Washington, DC
  • Lives Forever Changed by Relationships Centered in Christ


I have played a background role in the mentoring program for the past 4 years,
but I am excited about stepping up and growing this program. There are more than 400 kids in the Lowcountry area that don’t graduate each year in our local high schools. I feel like God has given us a vision to reach 400 students through the e3 mentoring program in the next 4 years and hope that you will pray alongside us for the resources to make this happen.

If you’re interested in the e3 program, sponsoring a child, or taking the step of mentoring, you can contact me at amieheath@seacoast.org or call 843.375.1099 x1703.
 

22 comments:

  1. Hi Amie- great to meet you!
    "God's ways aren't always logical" Thank you for sharing your stepping out in faith.
    PS My brother in law and his family live in North Charleston- I'm going to send this link to them!

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    Replies
    1. Awesome! We love when we can connect with family and thanks for the encouragement.

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  2. Thanks for sharing your testimony of faith in the Lord and following his leading!

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  3. AMAZING TESTIMONY! Praise God for women like BOTH you and your cousin! New follower from the "Monday Meetup"
    Tif
    Ramblings of a Southern Belle
    http://www.her-southern-ramblings.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks so much Tif! Love her much! Blessed to connect with you and look forward to getting to know you more! Blessings!

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  4. I love your blog. Beautiful testimony. I am a new follower from Meet New Bloggers Blog Hop. I would love if you would follow me back. I also subscribed by email. I can't wait to read more of your blog.
    Debi @ Adorned From Above
    www.adornedfromabove.com

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    1. Thanks so much Debi! So blessed to connect with you and am following you in all ways possible now too :) Looking forward to getting to know you! Blessings!

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  5. I am excited to be your newest follower! Nice to meet ya! Found you on GFC. Please follow back when ya get a chance :).
    xox
    Ash
    http://abpetite.blogspot.com/

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  6. Participating in the MNB Hop for the first time!

    Please check out my blog, if you haven't already. (And follow back.)

    Kristina
    http://www.yomichaelmichael.com

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    1. Thanks Kristina! Following you as well! Blessings!

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  7. Hello Wendy and Amie,

    Wendy, thank you for introducing us to your cousin Amie. Your love for her and pride in her is fun to see.

    Amie, thanks for sharing your heart and your journey here. I am excited to see that you are in youth ministry too, since that is a ministry my husband and I have been part of for years. So vital, needed and rewarding.

    Have a wonderful week,

    Jennifer Dougan
    www.jenniferdougan.com

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Jennifer! She is pretty spectacular! Blessings to you friend!

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  8. Thanks for all the encouragement and love! I love my cousin and how God has knitted our hearts together. Our Grandma laid a firm foundation for our faith and I know the lives we touch can be linked back to the love and encouragement she gave us. Thanks for the intro cuz!

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  9. What a testimony. thanks for inspiring me! Thrilled to meet you today :)

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    1. Thanks so much sweet friend! Blessings!

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  10. Praise the Lord! Futher proof that blessings always flow from obedience!

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  11. What a great step of faith and obedience to the Word of God - and so nice to meet your cousin :)

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    Replies
    1. Was so wonderful to introduce her to everyone! Thanks so much for your words of encouragement! Blessings!

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