Nanette Lynch is a longtime member of Kingwood United Methodist Church. Nanette and her husband Rob have two girls that are both married and near and dear to our community. During the week you can find Nanette hanging out with her coffee mom’s group, “solving the world’s problems” volunteering at KUMC’s welcome desk, or probably working with a foster family through Oasis ministries. In the last couple of years, God has really pushed Nanette into unchartered territory to serve in a unique place where her passions match her spiritual gifting, whether she likes it or not…she stopped by to tell us what that’s like.
When you’re passionate, you can do anything with God’s assistance.
by Nanette Lynch
It all started when a little boy stumbled into our church looking for a drink of water and then we met his brother and sisters. I never considered getting involved in foster care ministry until these four children came into my family’s life four years ago. Their greatest desire was simple—a family who loves them. My family, and the KUMC student ministry leaders, spent six months of intense caring and planning for them. We got them out of the chaos and into place where they would know they are loved. It was a beautiful thing even though it was heart-breaking. When those kids left my family, I knew I needed to do something to change the hearts of this church and make them aware that there are kids out there desperate for the safety and love of a family.
That is where Oasis ministry comes in. Our friend came looking for a drink of water when really he needed the living water, the true Oasis. So God brought several women together to begin dreaming about how we can support and even partner with foster and adoption families in Northeast Houston. Now, I have fallen in love with the parents who have committed to caring for foster kids, but I have also learned the gut-wrenching commitment it takes to take care of these kids. These foster parents are on fire to help these kids. That is what I want Oasis to be.
Oasis Ministry grew out of my family’s experience and it has forced me outside of my comfort zone. I am a behind the scenes person who doesn’t like speaking in front of groups, or getting attention, but God put this need on my heart and gave me a desire to help foster families. When you’re passionate, you can do anything with God’s assistance. When we began, I didn’t know much about the foster care system, but when I became a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) Volunteer it solidified everything in my heart and I could not disobey God. CASA has given me the knowledge and confidence I needed to begin and has taken away the fear and awkwardness. He’s telling me “Go and do it, and don’t worry about being embarrassed or awkward”. Friday, I’ll be on a conference call with pastors from other churches, which I think is laughable because I never would have been able to do that without God’s help.
I pray a lot for wisdom and where God wants this ministry to go. I ask Him daily because it’s scary sometimes and I wish I had someone to take the reins, but I do not want to disobey. Sometimes the need is so big, but I have to remember that it’s one family at a time. It’s comforting and empowering to me. When I can go to their homes and share Christ’s love with them it’s rewarding. My joke is that I don’t want to take a spiritual gifts test because I don’t’ want to use my spiritual gifts. I’m compassionate, I’m a nurse, and it’s in my blood. But I’ve decided that I will obey. If I don’t, God will get my attention.
If this sparks any interest in you, come talk to me. Come meet a family, or just get to know more. More importantly, If you feel moved to get involved in something, jump into it. Don’t wait to use your gifts and give. It’s a scary leap, but jump. You’ve got to do it.