Ken: I was saved when about nine years old at VBS after viewing a film in which Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. During the invitation that followed – I knew that I needed Jesus’ help to be able to be raised up after I died. I wouldn’t be able to take care of my sins – I needed to trust in what Jesus had done on the cross to be saved from my sins. By placing my trust in God’s grace alone, in Christ alone I was able to be free to live for Him and have eternal life.
Denise: I was saved when I was nine years old and realized that if I died I would not get to heaven. Praying, telling God I knew I was not good enough on my own and thanking Jesus for dying in my place was a great relief to me. I left church that day, knowing I had a place in heaven.
How God called us to ministry
For about 20 years we have taken a summer vacation in the mountains in Colorado at a Christian Family Camp. We experienced God’s still small voice in the solitude and beauty that He created in the Rockies. We had considered “doing” ministry when we “retired” for over ten years – based on being blessed at “our” family camp week for many years.
Early in the 2002 year, Ken found he had been “workforce reduced” (a friendlier term than being laid off or fired). After several “great” employment opportunities failed to produce a job – we started considering whether the Lord was calling us to ministry now instead of when we “retired”. Based on several “coincidences” we were certain the Lord was directing us to the ministry of Awana and being able to serve as missionaries in our “home area” of Chicago.
The Lord moved us very swiftly through the application, review, and acceptance process at Awana. Less than one month after submitting our application we were accepted as missionaries for the newly created Chicago area territory. The Lord has repeatedly blessed us by continually confirming to us that we are doing what He wants us to do.