By Elsie Bautista
Having been born in the Philippines and raised as a Roman Catholic, it is amazing that I am now working as the Director of Children’s Ministry at an evangelical church in Colorado. Here’s my story. My life dramatically changed when I accepted Jesus as my Savior as a young woman in the Philippines. I moved to Hong Kong and worked there for 13 years as a child care provider. Contributing to the lives of young children was inspiring. Some of the children came to know and follow Jesus, as a result of my prayers for them. In Hong Kong, I also worked as a Personal Assistant to the Managing Director of a Fortune 1000 company. I supervised operations in China, Singapore, and Malaysia. However, years before, the Holy Spirit spoke to me about the value of children’s ministry. I would eventually follow that calling.
In 1995, I moved to Colorado. This was a lonely time, since I was 3,000 miles from my parents and couldn’t speak English. It was difficult, but I adapted to snowstorms and a new country. At age 35, I took driving lessons so I could get around on my own. It is never too late to learn a new skill. I was working in a preschool in the area. After 3 years of searching for a church home, God brought me to Colorado Community Church in Englewood. I joined a women’s Bible study and met a Godly woman who introduced me to the Director of Children’s Ministry. Two days later, she hired me as a part time childcare provider at the church. During this time, I completed an Early Childhood Education program at a local community college. My English was getting better. I loved my work.
In just 18 months, I became the Childcare Coordinator and was soon promoted to Early Childhood Coordinator. After serving in this role, I was asked to take on the job of Assistant Director of Children’s Ministry. The Director worked with me and trained me. In June of this year, our Director of Children’s Ministry resigned and I became the Interim Children’s Ministry Director. You guessed itâ€¦I am now blessed and honored to be the Director of Children’s Ministry at our church. Looking back, I see the amazing way that God was preparing me. I have sometimes asked the Lord, “Can I really do this job?” God has answered, “Nothing is impossible for me.” I am thankful that others saw the potential in me and supported me. Above all, I am thankful to our Lord Jesus Christ.
From a Childcare Provider in Hong Kong to Director of Children’s Ministry in Colorado, has been an amazing journey. When I wonder if I could do this work, I recall the scripture, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Andâ€¦He does!
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
Elsie Bautista is the Director of Children’s Ministry at Colorado Community Church in Englewood, CO.