Favorite Books-
Ruthless Trust (Brennan Manning), Bird by Bird (Anne Lamott), Celebration of Discipline (Richard Foster) Gifted to Lead (Nancy Beach)

Favorite TV Show-
Parenthood, Downton Abbey, Top Chef, So You Think You Can Dance

For Fun I Enjoy-
running, writing, traveling & leading retreats, entertaining in our home

Historical Figure I Admire-
I wrote a letter to President Reagan when I was seven. And then wrote a “book” in 2nd grade about writing that letter. And I wrote to Sandra Day O’Conner and hung her picture in my room. Nerd Alert.

What I Like Best About What I Do-
Teaching and seeing the power of God in scripture. Listening and seeing the power of Jesus in people’s stories.

Bio-
I was an “army brat” as a kid, moving six times in my first fifteen years of life. I was always the new kid, attending four schools between sixth grade and graduation, so I’ve always identified with being on the margin and had a heart to draw new people into the mix.

I grew up knowing about Jesus–through a “wordless book” and “Good News Club” as a preschooler, Awanas in elementary school and more Vacation Bible Schools than I can count. I had a deep relationship with the idea of God answering my prayers, more like genie-Jesus than savior-Jesus.

It wasn’t until college that I had a re-awakening with God’s power in my life. The pressures of sports, academics, friendships and dating caught up with me and I began to crumble. I had held onto my childhood Christianity as a comfort, but my heart became desperate to know the truth of my condition a personal, powerful experience of knowing the real Jesus. In college is where I also met my husband Dave and we settled in Richmond after graduation.

We found Hope Church in its first months of life, and quickly were welcomed in by Pete and Meg Bowell. One fall afternoon in 1998, Pete Bowell sat with us on our deck and showed us the family roster for Hope Church. A dozen middle school girls were attending–this became our “youth group.” When I began doing life with these girls, stumbling along in bible study and discipleship, I felt more alive than ever before. Little did I know that this little group was the beginning of something special.

Working with those sweet girls led me into youth ministry and to Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, where I graduated with a Masters in Christian Counseling in 2004. I continued working in private practice at that time, with teenagers and their parents, while also leading the women’s ministry at Hope.
My experiences in counseling and women’s ministry, as well as my own spiritual upbringing through Hope have brought me full-circle, and now I’m honored to serve at Hope again.

My husband Dave and I have three awesome kids who you will probably meet roaming the concourse of Hope Church, acting like they run the place.

Other Interests:
Co-Author of Start Here: Beginning a Relationship with Jesus (Cook 2014)

Author, She’s Got Issues and the She’s Got Issues DVD Curriculum (Tyndale 2012)

Contributing Writer, The Everyday Matters Bible

Advisory Board Member for the Synergy Movement, a national conference for vocational women in ministry.

Blogger on everyday faith, leadership, relationships.