Photo Credit: Photo by Flickr user Steve Wall. Cropping and text added.

In September, 3 young adults began 9 months of discernment and service as ministry interns in different churches across the Greater Northwest Area. Over the coming months, they’ll be sharing their experiences with us. For their first post, they each share a short reflection on their experience centered on Isaiah 43.16-19.

This is what God says,
the God who builds a road right through the ocean,
who carves a path through pounding waves,
The God who summons horses and chariots and armies—
they lie down and then can’t get up;
they’re snuffed out like so many candles:
“Forget about what’s happened;
don’t keep going over old history.
Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new.
It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it?
There it is! I’m making a road through the desert,
rivers in the badlands.”
Isaiah 43:16-19 The Message

By Ryan Scott | Ministry Intern serving at Valley & Mountain in Seattle, WA

[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hen I began this journey I knew there would be a lot of new things happening. A new city, new home, new job, new ministry, new coworkers; these all were exciting to think about, but challenging at the same time. New isn’t always comfortable. Even small things like not seeing my clerk at Safeway who has known me since I was a young child, to the baristas at my usual coffee shop, or the bartender at my favorite bar. All pretty inconsequential in the larger scheme of things, nevertheless, they had an impact on my life in Springfield and made leaving for something new even more challenging.

Ryan Scott
Ryan Scott

Reading the scripture from Isaiah made me realize that God isn’t a fixed sedentary figure who never changes. God says “Look! I’m doing a new thing; now it sprouts up; don’t you recognize it?” God reminds us that he is indeed an ever changing, ever adapting, being. He’s making a way through the wild places for us from missionaries serving in literally wild places, to me serving in an urban jungle. This scripture reminds me that God is always doing something new. He’s doing something new in the world and God is using us as agents for this change. In our willingness to step out into the world and do something new or to do something powerful we are living in the spirit.

Now that I am settled in I can see how doing all this new stuff is changing me. It’s giving me perspective on issues I never spent much time diving into. Working with youth in a suburban community never gave me deep insight into homelessness, gentrification, and the struggles of low income urban communities.

Through this new chapter in life God has opened up doors for me that have given me new insight into the struggles of injustice and inequality in our world. Sometimes doing something new, as daunting as it may seem, can open your eyes to a new world and a new or deeper relationship with God.

Ryan is from Springfield, OR where he was a paraprofessional specializing in after school/community programming and 9th grade academic support/intervention with Springfield Public Schools and the Willamalane Park and Recreation District. Ryan was also the Youth Director for Trinity United Methodist Church in Eugene. Ryan’s passion for faith and youth was sparked by serving in Boy Scouts of America as a camp chaplain and scoutmaster where he was constantly exposed to the issues youth care about. This led to further exploration of a call to vocational ministry in the UMC. Ryan now serves at Valley and Mountain Fellowship, a spiritual community in the diverse South Seattle neighborhood of Hillman City as an apprentice minister.

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