I read a quote that said, “Each man should frame life so that at some future hour, fact and his dreaming meet.” I found that to be true. However, I believe that God framed my life so that at some future hour, fact and my dreaming were able to meet.
As a young person, I always had intense drive. I never wanted to do things halfway. A revered man of God, Steve Lyman, said, “The way you do anything is the way you do everything.” I wanted every task, project, event to be the best it could be. Everything I worked on, I made sure to give 110 percent. I found myself involved in every academic club, school activity, and church ministry possible. I wanted to make an impact.
As I attended college, I fell in love with numbers, accounting, finance—just business in general. When asked the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I always resounded back “A CFO of a Fortune 500 company!” However, in the back of my mind, I always knew I wanted more than a degree, a title, and a position. I needed purpose behind my efforts.
During this frame of my life, I attended a mission’s trip. Little did I know one service would set me up for a divine God moment. After one deep altar service, the time came for us to pick ourselves up and leave. I remember hearing our trip’s chaperone, Luke Levine say, “Sometimes you pray hard to release a burden. Tonight, He gave you a burden to carry.” We proceeded outside to our bus stop, all of us still weeping in the Spirit. We began to sing in a cappella, “The Enemy Has Been Defeated.” Windows of surrounding flats began to open, and the presence of God saturated that area. God ministered through us at that moment in one of the purest forms. I returned home still carrying that burden God gave me. I remember praying to God, “If I can connect young people to moments like this, sign me up.” Knowing that was a big prayer, a big dream, I prayed it anyways.
During a home church service, the praise team began to sing “The Enemy Has Been Defeated.” Instantly, all the memories of that night in England flooded back. In a silent moment, I heard God whisper, “Will you go?” I responded, “Sure God! Where are we going?” He returned the same question to me, “Will you go?” With my entire being, I said, “Yes. I will!” At that moment I knew that my life purpose and direction was forever changed. I knew my new frame was being created.
I began to position myself for God to use me. I continued to work in the corporate world, moving up in positions and sharpening various skill sets, but only to fund my passion for God’s purpose. I began volunteering with Missouri District Youth, under then youth president, Matthew Johnson. He created an avenue for me to use my education and skills for God’s kingdom. After that, I was hooked. I knew I could never go back to just punching numbers for company profits. In addition, I began to become heavily involved in our local youth ministry as the administrative director of Epoch Student Ministries. This is where I fell in love! I discovered my heartbeat was working with young people. There is something about connecting with a group of students and being able to facilitate an event or activity that allows God moments to change their lives.
The next frame of my life looked a lot like working two full-time jobs. I was able to move from being a construction office manager, to a credit analyst, then to a human resources and finance director of a hospital—all while I was knee-deep in youth ministry and short-term mission’s trips. I received another opportunity from then General Youth President Michael Ensey to be involved in Apostolic Youth Corps. My heart lit up at the opportunity to help promote the very ministry that changed my life so many years ago! Little did I know God was framing me for my next opportunity as AYC (Apostolic Youth Corps) director with UPCI Youth Ministries.
As a ministry director, I have found purpose in this position. My drive, charts, metrics, and reports were once used to analyze and predict profits. Now I can use them to grow an Apostolic and God-purposed ministry. My charts, metrics, and reports now measure revivals, life-changing moments, and ministry sparks for young people across North America. Yet, aren’t these the best measurements of all?
I thank God for allowing my dream and reality to meet. Next, I must dream again and allow God to frame in the rest.
Seneatha Clayton graduated from Missouri State University with a BS in accounting and plans to finish a master’s degree in the future. Along with her love for ministry, she enjoys volunteering, event planning, and travel. As a young person, her life was impacted by youth ministry and the people involved, so she takes every opportunity to pour back into the youth of today.