Ann’s Story

In 2015 I was at a point in my life where I was pretty unhappy, deep down. My job was not rewarding, and I didn’t have kids to put my energy into. I basically felt like I wasn’t adding any value to the world. A year earlier a friend encouraged me to connect more deeply with my faith and made me realize I’m not on the path God wants me to be on. So I asked myself, What can I change?

I’d lay on my living room floor and listen to the song “Help Me Find It” by the band Sidewalk Prophets: “I’m done fighting, I’m finally letting go . . . If there’s a road I should walk, help me find it.” I’d then ask God, “What’s next?” And incredibly, fortunately, I was able to quit my job. I knew this was what God wanted for me, but I didn’t have a plan. It was hard, but I knew I was in the right place.

I started both Bible Study Fellowship and Lay Care Training at CPC that fall. Those two things were really meaningful to me. I had a BSF leader who just wrapped her arms around me and helped me. And I loved Lay Care Training. I’ve had some special relationships with seniors since I was a college student, and I knew I wanted to do Senior Visitation. I was paired with Grayce Muske in August of 2016, when she was 99 years old! We’ve been partners for more than 4 years now. We just click! We used to go out for dinner, and I’d take her to Mid-Month Chapel services here at CPC.

I love Grayce’s self-deprecating sense of humor, and I have so much respect for her. A couple of the beatitudes stand out to me when I think of Grayce and what I’ve learned from her. Blessed are the meek—she’s very humble, and I really admire that. She’s done so much in her life and has a lot of wisdom. Blessed are the poor in spirit . . . she’s had to depend on God in such significant ways. As Pastor Jody [Phenow] says, she truly is Amazing Grayce!

I’ve always felt more joy when I serve others—regardless of what form that takes. As I purposefully changed direction in my life, I knew that faith was going to be the way forward for me. I’ve been a Christian since I was little, but I’d been trying to do it on my own. I’d lean on my faith during tough times, but I never made it front and center. But I feel that it’s my foundation now. When I quit my job, I kinda handed God the keys, and He’s dropped things in my life like Grayce. I’ve also always wanted to mentor kids and tutor, so now I’ve been volunteering at Edina High School for the past five years. I’m passionate about education and helping kids accomplish their dreams of going to college. Serving there is really meaningful to me.

My mom has always set a great example of service for me, and of course, Jesus was all about being a servant to those around Him. I’ve always loved Hebrews 12:1-2, about throwing off what entangles us and running the race before us. I was getting tangled up, so I’m working to get free. I don’t know where I’m going, but I know better how to run it—with Jesus beside me. And I know that serving is what Christ wants me to do. Deep down, instead of sadness, I now feel joy.