My Ordination Journey
My Ordination Journey
Inspired by the Word of God as a new believer in my early 20’s I started writing poems and giving them to friends, family, and associates as the Lord would lead as a way to express my faith and love for Jesus.
After raising a family and working various jobs I have been led to write bible studies and devotionals that are accompanied by the poetry written years earlier. Most recently I have felt the move of the Spirit to round out my knowledge and be better equipped to serve in the capacity the Lord is calling me into such as Women’s ministry.
My name is Laurie Rowland from Santa Rosa Beach Florida USA and this is my ordination journey through many events where God was faithful! I am married to my husband of 36 years and we have two grown daughters; both married. We lived in California for most of our lives and attended a wonderful community church. I had been in women’s ministry leaders and comprehensive bible studies for 25 years.
We were empty nesters when my husband and I started to talk about retirement and after months of prayer and fasting, we felt led to sell out of California completely, not really sure where we would end up. Fast forward to God’s amazing guidance; as our pillar of fire by night the pillar of cloud by day, he led us to settle in the panhandle of Florida. This had literally been a desire of my heart that I never thought would be fulfilled. While in California, my role on the women’s ministry coordinator team was to help select Bible study curriculum for Bible studies for groups of about 200 women. My heart for the last 25 years has been to motivate ladies to stay in the word of God on a daily basis; something I had learned was paramount to my own walk.
What the leadership team began to notice is that weekly bible study had become a social gathering where home-baked muffins and fancy coffee had become the main attraction. Some of the ladies were not completing their studies, not serving at the church or outreach center, and not inviting women from the community to join the study. I began to write curriculum that took a practical fresh look at the scriptures, focusing on the Gospel to help them apply it to their daily lives. I wrote devotionals for winter centering on Christmas and prayer, and a summer devotional for them to do on their own.
We further selected video Bible Study series from powerful women authors that challenged and inspired the ladies. We began to see in them a hunger for Jesus and have a heart for missions, outreach, and serving. It was a transformation that stirred a desire in me to minister to women and write on a full-time basis.
My Salvation Story
I was raised in a cult, and as a teenager, I began to question the doctrine and decided I could not accept it as truth. I rebelled against religion, school and my parents, getting caught up in parties and substances. It was during that time I met and married my husband at 18. At age 20 I recognized I was in a downward spiral with no way out. Seeking spiritual comfort I started studying with yet a different cult with a girl I knew from the party days. I had an uneasy feeling about what I was hearing and soon cried out to God and asked him to show me the TRUTH. A Christian lady I worked with suggested I meet with her pastor. When I walked into his office he announced that he would not be engaging in lengthy debates about the other religions, but that he would be happy to share with me the Gospel and led me to the Lord there in his office. I cried a cleansing cry all the way home and told my husband what had gone on. He listened and then made it clear he wanted none of it, and claimed that he was an Atheist. In order to survive being unequally yoked to a man who still wanted to party, but did not want a divorce. I immersed myself in the Word of God and in ministry as much as I could while maintaining my home life in a way that honored God. I sought to go Bible College, but my husband said no, that we could not afford it. The Lord was awesome in that my husband did see such a positive change in me he allowed me to give to the church, be in ministry and stay home with our two daughters and train them up to know Christ as savior. Further praise is that he eventually did give his life to Christ!
My Ordination Journey – My dream
My ministry dream is to partner with other ministries, churches and outreach centers to teach, disciple and mentor new and rededicating Christian women to be fully rooted and grounded in the word in order to avoid going astray or shipwrecking their faith; possibly incorporating the devotionals and studies I’ve written.
I have a pastor’s heart for women, who were raised in the church but have fallen away, or baby Christians that were not disciplined and never grew their faith. The Lord has put so many of them in my path; disillusioned by legalism and “religion” they are hungry for Gospel of truth and grace. The challenges I face, are that many of the women in my circle have been successful in business and are well educated, but don’t see their need for revival and revelation of the Almighty God.
Receiving my Christian Leaders Institute scholarship has provided me with the formal training, credibility, confidence and the contacts I lacked. I recently completed the Deacon Minister Ordination through the pastor through my local church in my home with my husband and ladies small group. To have hands laid on me, and to be anointed with oil was so powerful!
Pastor Jeremy prayed a spirit-led prayer and confirmed my calling. I have now also completed my training for my Women’s Minister Ordination. In our church in Florida, I am a Women’s Ministry Coach overseeing Section Coaches and Small Group Leaders. The timing is perfect, as the fellowship is growing and the focus is on ministry and mentorship. The CLI training has further prepared me to do good works, which God has prepared in advance for me to do. ( Eph 2:10b paraphrased, NIV; Zondervan Pub. 1981)
My husband supports me in my ministry calling and the time I devote to classes and writing. I have enrolled in a Writing For Ministry course that I know will build on my biblical training received. I am so grateful to CLI for the opportunity and training and will continue to partner with them financially. Please pray that I continue to be led as to how to use my ordination and gifting to bless others and bring glory to the Lord as I seek a paid position or another income opportunity.