I found Allyson through her stunning Instagram page. I am grateful she took time out of her busy schedule to share with us! Today, she speaks to us about coming to God authentically, what she has learned through her husband, and the power of a small group ministry.
(Photo credit: @miriamelizabeth)
Inspiring biblical passage of the moment: Isaiah 55– pretty much the whole chapter. If I had to choose a verse or two, I’d say verses 10-11: “For as the rain and snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, make it bring forth and sprout, giving seeds to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.”
Spiritual growth focus at the moment: Discipline in terms of intentional prayer and time in the word. I am a busybody, so often I make excuses and don’t prioritize intentional time with God.
Profession: Director of Kids Camps.
A one sentence bio of yourself: I am a formerly independent, feel-nothing and need-nothing girl who collided with Jesus, who has slowly transformed me into a God-dependent, mercy-filled woman who needs and loves Jesus desperately.
When did you first encounter God? I first encountered God for real when I was 22. I had just graduated from Texas A&M University and moved to Houston to start my first job. I got invited to Houston’s First Baptist Church, and in a singles Bible study class after the service, I saw God tangibly moving between the people there, and it knocked me right on my butt. I wanted to know more and understand what it was that created an empathetic, authentic love like the one I saw in everyone I met that night.
“I saw God tangibly moving between the people there, and it knocked me right on my butt.”
What has helped you grow spiritually in this season? Community and fellowship, hands down. What kept me coming back was God’s work in the hearts of that Bible study class. People there cared in a way I hadn’t encountered before. Several women I met made it their priority to get me plugged into a small group, serving in the church, and social events. It was through these things that I started my walk towards God.
Just read/currently reading (and what has it taught you?): I read through Job last month, and it taught me a lot about coming to God as we are– if we are angry, confused, or sad, come to Him authentically. If we are overjoyed, happy, or full, come to Him authentically.
“If we are angry, confused, or sad, come to Him authentically. If we are overjoyed, happy, or full, come to Him authentically.”
Top three essentials: A good book, a cup of coffee, and Elevation worship music!
How did God speak to you recently? Through my husband! He has such strength in his humility, discernment, and leadership, all things that God is teaching me a lot about, through Aaron.
Hobby: Playing volleyball and pickle ball, Bible journaling, and I want to pick up some photography skills!
Top three practical tips for staying spiritually strong: Accountability partners, community (for spiritual growth and positive social interactions), and organic time with God (meaning you and God only, no podcasts, sermons, Bible studies. Get in there and dig through the word on your own!)
Favorite person in scripture? Timothy!!
What do you want people to learn about God when they look at you? That radical, authentic change is a wonderful, freeing, peaceful thing when that change is for God.
Favorite season? Fall: cool (ish, in Texas) temperatures are coming, football season is in full swing, and Christmas is coming. I LOVEEEEE the fall. So much.
Favorite holiday? Christmas! I love family traditions, good food, and the spirit that surrounds it!
A dream you have? I have a dream to adopt children. It’s funny, I had this dream even before I knew Jesus. God is good like that!
A special tradition you and your family engage in or keep: I have an 8 pound Yorkie/Papillon mix pup named Presley – and for the last five years, I’ve taken a picture with her in December, where I put her in my empty stocking. She hates it, but I think its funny/adorable!
Question you will ask when you get to heaven? “Can I touch the nail scars on your hands, Jesus?”
Thing you want to raise awareness about: I want to raise awareness about the gospel! I know this sounds cliche, but I want to reach people!!
“I want to reach people!!”
What do you usually do before 9 a.m.? Make my bed and wash my face, play with Presley, drink some homemade juice (carrot/orange/apple/spinach is my fave), drink a glass of water, drink coffee, drive to work and say a prayer in the car, and get started at work!
What is on your nightstand? Books, a candle, a lamp, and a beautiful hourglass my husband got for me a few years ago.
Define Christianity in a sentence: Christianity is a walk with God that brings about freedom, peace, purpose, connection, and understanding that our lives aren’t actually ours and that Jesus is the purest, timeless foundation on which we are created.
For more Allyson:
Until next time, keep witnessing!