Dear supporters and my church family,
This time last year was a very hard but exciting time of year for me. It was exactly this time last year that I realised that God was calling me to spend a year serving Him with Taste. It was this time last year that He helped me get through a very tough situation in my life, and at the same time prepared me for what was to come and gave me a testimony to share with hundreds of young people that I get to meet every day.
I am so thankful to God for what He has done in my life throughout this year. I have been given the privilege of being part of a ministry which enables young people to see who God really is. They are able to get a ‘Taste’ of what being a Christian is; they can understand that it’s not something that is dull and boring, but it is about having a relationship with someone who loves us and values us no matter what we have done. I have seen young people experience God in a way they haven’t before, seen some make first time commitments and also seen some young people who have been struggling and hurting too.
I have felt that God has placed on my heart to stay on for a second year with Taste for several months now. I spent months praying about it, talking to people who I trust and respect about it, and asking God to reveal what His plan for me was. I tried opening doors; I applied for the second year post and Andy and Joy felt that it was right to accept me and to offer the position. I have since spent a long time praying about it, with people and individually. Ultimately, I have had to make a decision based on what I feel God is saying and I really believe that He wants me to continue my work with Taste for another year, and to go to York St John University the following year to do my Fine Art course.
The concept of staying in Essex is really exciting. I can’t wait to work alongside a new team who will start in September; encouraging, supporting and leading them through their first year. I have also started to weave both my musical gifts and my artistic gifts together; using art in talks as visual aids or responses and leading art workshops at events. I feel that both can be combined and I am looking forward to experimenting with that more during the next year. I want to make the most of the gifts that God has given me!
I am also very excited to be able to share my testimony again through the year; God is still working in my heart and I am aware that it is a healing process which I have to go through to get past the hurt and the pain. But, these times that we go through, God can really use us and speak to other people through us and our testimonies. I have so many testimonies of how God has used me this year to minister to those who are hurting like I am after a family break up. It’s a really big issue in schools and it is so touching to see those affected still smiling.
In my second year I will continue to receive regular teaching and I intend to get stuck in to the local church, as I recognise that church families are so important. I have also really valued my relationship with my mentor this year, which will continue into next year. A few years ago I went along to a ‘Growing Young Leaders’ course with Unite run by Norwich YFC; this seems a perfect opportunity to put some of those things I have learned into practice!
These are just some of the things that I am going to be doing as a second year in Taste. I have valued everyone’s prayers and financial support for me during this first year with them. I still struggle; it’s not completely easy and there are definitely challenges, but God is using me and that really gets me excited. I feel that this decision is right and it is of God and I would appreciate your continuation of prayer for me.
I was blown away by the response to my previous financial appeal. I recognise that it is a big ask to provide that for me again after everyone was so generous last year. What I would ask is that you would pray about it and if you feel able, to support me again to do this amazing work for God. I am trusting that God will provide because I know He did an amazing miracle last time for me. I can’t thank you all enough for your generosity. If you do feel able, there are several ways of donating, feel free to contact me.
I hope you will be able to rejoice with me on hearing this news!
I look forward to coming and seeing everyone very soon.
Below is a letter from Andy and Joy, explaining it a bit more…
support letter for Beth