Beth’s Time at re:generation
How did it begin?
‘This will be more a gift to you than you are to it’
is what I would tell the me of two and half years ago. There was so much I was about to learn! I heard about re:gen at a party where I met and chatted to Emma (the re:gen worker before me) for the first time and she described her work in schools to me. At the time my life was a patchwork of agency work and summer–school staffing. Having previously been involved in creating Prayer Spaces my ears pricked up (as did my spirit) when she mentioned how part of her job was to set these spaces up in schools. This resonated in my heart – creating places in a setting where young people can have fun exploring who God is to them and empowering them to begin a dialogue with him, perhaps even for the first time, was a cause I knew I could give my energy to. Now, looking back, Prayer Spaces and workshops have been some of the most rewarding experiences. Similar moments in weekly clubs have also been the context for the most treasured memories as a schools worker. So much of the life of a young person growing up is heavily structured and there can be a lot for them to accomplish, so allowing space and time at clubs with the pressure off, to explore the big questions in life and to give value to the personal experiences each child is having has been so worthwhile!
What has been the most satisfying part?
For me the most satisfying part of my role has been the freedom to facilitate moments of eternal value – the moments when children encounter God for themselves. Whether it’s through presenting the gospel in a new, creative way in a club or assembly that means the children gain a personal understanding of what the good news could mean for them, or whether it’s that they begin to sense God’s closeness in their life for the first time. What more precious thing could they be equipped with than the ability to connect with their loving creator as they face the challenges and the choices that their unknown futures hold?
What have you learnt?
It’s not only the children that have been learning lessons during my time at re:gen, I’ve been on a journey too. At the start I would throw myself into every idea wholeheartedly and then be disappointed if the idea didn’t go exactly to plan or if I didn’t present it perfectly, this is a great way to learn but also a real roller coaster. Now I’m so much more aware of how it feels to lean on Father-God’s grace and allow him to provide help through others and to make things work together for good. Keeping things simple is one of the keys to maintaining a restful rhythm in life, this awareness is something I’ll definitely be taking with me into future ministry tasks or positions. Allowing other’s to help is something I’ve had to get better at both in work and outside of it as my personal journey running alongside my time at re:gen has been one full of change and of letting go. Caring for and then losing my mum who I’ve always lived with during my first year, then learning to adjust to the new life without her has been something I’m not sure I could have managed without the kind understanding and flexibility of the team of trustees. Having time to be with her was so important and something I will always remember.
What and who are you going to miss?
- The children, some of whom have done some growing since we first met as I’ve seen them most school weeks for two and half years.
- The amazing team of trustees and workers at re:gen who have been an inspiration and a great source of support.
- The incredible network of churches and the volunteers that are just as much part of the re:gen family as the trustees and workers are – these really are heroes (you know who you are!).
- The office staff at Trinity Church – there’s no friendlier or more caring atmosphere to work in and be made to feel a part of.
- I’ll miss writing and delivering fun assemblies.
- And I’ll miss transforming school classrooms into Prayer Spaces.
So what’s next?
Once this pandemic dies down, I’ll be getting married to my fiance and best friend, Jason, and moving away from the London area to start a new chapter of life together. We may live state side for a time to train and study together.
I’m so thankful to the team at re:gen for trusting me, encouraging me, supporting me and allowing me to grow and to be myself. I’ve learnt so much and been so humbled by the committed team of volunteers who serve so cheerfully and enthusiastically and by those who commit so diligently to praying for us. We never know what one word of prayer, one kind act of service or one story shared can do to change the course of someone’s life for the better! Maybe in eternity we will find out!