Incoming Leaders

Cuthbert, Amy

Escondido, The Foundry

I was raised Pentecostal, so I have tons of “supernatural” experiences with God. However, the most profound happened in a very “boring” way which shaped the course of my life and ministry today. At the age of fourteen I decided to dedicate my life to the Lord and the pursuit of His will in my life. I can be an extremely focused individual so I attended every church service I could, spent hours in prayer, read every Christian book I could get my hands on and took every class on Christianity that I could. Yet, I struggled with feeling very distant from God in my life. The harder I was seeking God the more desperate I became as nothing seemed to work to connect me to Him.

Decades later (and two Bible degrees) I hadn’t gotten anywhere in my faith, and I was depressed and numb. Then one day while my two boys were napping, I listened to a sermon on the rich young ruler from Mark 10:17-22. The speaker talked about how the fault of the rich young ruler was not his wealth but that he was trying to earn God’s favor through his good works. Jesus was able to point out his area of weakness by asking him to sell everything. In the same way we all must admit that we cannot earn God’s favor through our good works but must rely on Christ to find that favor with God.

In that moment I realized that all these years I had been trying to earn my salvation through all my good works (ministry, seminary, etc.). I realized that the closeness I craved from God was offered to me through Christ alone and I could either take it (and realize my failure in trying to “do” Christianity) or continue my path of doing things myself. I choose to accept His incredible gift. This dramatically transformed my life in that moment. Suddenly I knew what it meant to be a Christian, the entire Bible finally made sense, and I had something to give others when I ministered to them. I sometimes think that God gave me this moment amid my Pentecostal life to show the strength and stability of the gospel that goes well beyond feelings, emotions, and supernatural experiences.

God's Call to Ministry

I think I received a calling into ministry when I was fourteen and dedicated my whole life to God. God’s greatest care is for His children both lost and found and being dedicated to Him would ultimately mean a call to ministry. Yet, I had nothing to give people until I truly experienced the gospel at work in my own heart and the peace it gave me with God. From that moment on I have lived to share this good news that I experienced with others. I particularly feel called to teaching the Bible as it reveals God’s plan for salvation. I feel most led by the spirit when I am teaching in a classroom and sharing my own experiences with God with my students.

The Free Methodist Church

When I taught at the Rock School of Ministry at the Rock Church in San Diego I started hearing a lot about the Wesleyan Holiness movement and the Free Methodist Church through one of the professors named Kevin Mannoia. Through unforeseen circumstances the school ended up shutting down and my family left the Rock Church and during this process I asked Kevin how I could become a member of the Free Methodist Church and he connected me to the Foundry in Escondido.

I feel called to champion justice issues in the country and world within the framework of the Bible, and I love that this is a strength of the Free Methodist church and see myself fulfilling this calling alongside a group of people who see this as a priority as well. To me social justice and the gospel always walk hand in hand and I am overjoyed to be part of a church that sees the value in both.