When God’s Spirit Surprises Us : Sarah Baldwin

When God’s Spirit Surprises Us - Sarah Baldwin - 104 - FrontStage BackStage with Jason Daye

When the Spirit of God moves, how can we best steward that experience without getting in the way? In this week’s conversation on FrontStage BackStage, host Jason Daye is joined by the Reverend Dr. Sarah Baldwin, Vice President of Student Life at Asbury University. Sarah has served for nearly 30 years in Christian higher education in a variety of roles, including University Pastor and Vice President. She’s an ordained elder in the Free Methodist Church. Her most recent book is entitled Generation Awakened. Together, Sarah and Jason explore some of the questions and challenges we might face as ministry leaders when God moves in a dramatic fashion. Sarah also shares her firsthand experiences behind the scenes of the revival that broke out at Asbury in February 2023 and the lessons that God taught her through that experience.

Looking to dig more deeply into this topic and conversation? Every week we go the extra mile and create a free toolkit so you and your ministry team can dive deeper into the topic that is discussed. Find your Weekly Toolkit below… Love well, Live well, Lead well!

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Additional Resource Links

www.inviteresources.com – Visit Sarah’s website to discover deeper insights into her ministry, book, articles, shop, and a wealth of resources designed to enrich your spiritual path.

Generation Awakened: An Eyewitness Account of the Powerful Outpouring of God at Asbury  – What would you do if God showed up when you least expected it? On February 8, 2023, there was a spontaneous outpouring of God’s love on Asbury’s campus, leading many to wonder: “What’s happening here?” and, “Is this real?” Now, you can witness the event through Sarah Baldwin’s firsthand account of what happened when God showed up and decide for yourself what you think it all means.

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Ministry Leaders Growth Guide

Key Insights and Concepts

  • The spontaneous movement of God observed in Asbury’s chapel on February 8, 2023, sparked a profound spiritual awakening among students, leading to testimonies of experiencing the love of Jesus and profound transformation.
  • The organic growth of the spiritual movement on campus transcended expectations as students continued to pour into the chapel, inviting others to join and igniting a ripple effect that spread to other universities and even across the globe.
  • As God orchestrates something beyond human control, the leader’s response should be one of humility with a commitment to scaffold and steward rather than control the movement of the Spirit.
  • God invites us to prioritize consecration over talent, emphasizing the importance of the heart’s alignment with God’s purposes over mere skill or ability.
  • Unity, grounded in a shared surrender to Jesus, was pivotal in guiding the multi-generational and multi-ethnic leadership team, fostering an environment where diverse voices and perspectives were honored and valued.
  • The journey of saying “yes” to God’s leading, step-by-step, even in the face of uncertainty, highlight the importance of obedience and trust in God’s provision, despite not always knowing the ultimate outcome.
  • The principle of God’s multiplication means even the smallest offerings of time, resources, and energy, when surrendered to Him, can be abundantly multiplied for His purposes.
  • It’s not about having all the talent, resources, or wisdom, but about offering what one has, trusting in the Holy Spirit to bless and multiply it for the work of ministry and the expansion of God’s kingdom.
  • God often works in ways that surpass human understanding, using ordinary individuals and circumstances to accomplish extraordinary purposes, demonstrating His power and sovereignty.
  • Leadership in ministry involves embracing vulnerability and openness to the leading of the Holy Spirit, even when it means stepping into unknown territory or facing challenges beyond human capacity.
  • As leaders in ministry, it’s essential to cultivate a posture of humility and reverence, acknowledging that the work of God is beyond human manipulation or control and requires faithful stewardship and surrender.
  • The transformative power of God’s love and the work of the Holy Spirit is at the heart of any spiritual awakening or revival, reminding us that God is the author and finisher of our faith, and it is He who sustains and empowers His people for His purposes.

Questions for Reflection

  • How can I create intentional spaces for spiritual formation and support the development of faith journeys within my ministry context?
  • When was the last time I witnessed a deep movement of the Spirit?
  • When reflecting on moments of spontaneous spiritual awakening, when and how have I observed God’s transformative work among individuals and the broader community? How did the Spirit of God move? What was the response?
  • In what ways can I help cultivate an environment that encourages authentic worship and fosters a deeper sense of connection with God? Do we treat this as a priority in our local church? Why or why not?
  • How do I navigate the tension between stewarding and controlling spiritual movements within my ministry? What are some examples of how I or our ministry team has “scaffolded” or “stewarded” the work of the Spirit well? How can we grow in this area?
  • Reflecting on the principle of consecration over talent, how can I prioritize cultivating a heart aligned with God’s purposes over focusing solely on skill or ability in ministry leadership? What are some examples in our ministry where we have focused on heart over talent? What has God taught us through this posture?
  • How am I intentionally fostering unity among diverse voices and perspectives within my ministry context, grounded in our shared surrender to Jesus? Are there any voices missing? How can we better amplify diverse perspectives?
  • How do I handle uncertainty in ministry? What can I do to cultivate a posture of obedience and trust in God’s leading, even in the midst of uncertainty or unknown outcomes?
  • In what ways have I experienced God’s multiplication of my or other’s offerings in ministry? Are there specific things I need to trust to His provision and abundance right now? What are they and how can I entrust them to God?
  • How can I shift my focus from relying solely on talent, resources, or wisdom to just offering what I have, trusting in the Holy Spirit to bless and multiply it for the work of ministry? What would this look like?
  • How am I prioritizing prayer and seeking God’s guidance in all decisions within my ministry? How am I demonstrating the importance of prayerful dependence on God’s discernment and leading?
  • In what ways can I cultivate humility and reverence in my leadership, acknowledging the limitations of human manipulation or control and surrendering to God’s work?
  • How do I perceive the potential for spiritual awakening and revival within my ministry context? How can I actively participate in nurturing and fostering such movements?
  • Reflecting on God’s transformative love and the work of the Holy Spirit, how can I center my ministry leadership on the foundational truth that God is the author and sustainer of our faith?
  • How can I create intentional rhythms of reflection and self-assessment to continually align my ministry leadership with God’s purposes and leading, recognizing that His plans far exceed my own?

Full-Text Transcript

When the Spirit of God moves, how can we best steward that experience without getting in the way?

Jason Daye
In this episode, I’m joined by the Reverend Dr. Sarah Baldwin, Vice President of Student Life at Asbury University. Sarah has served for nearly 30 years in Christian higher education in a variety of roles, including University Pastor and Vice President. She’s an ordained elder in the Free Methodist Church. Her most recent book is entitled Generation Awakened. Together, Sarah and I explore some of the questions and challenges we might face as ministry leaders when God moves in a dramatic fashion. Sarah also shares her firsthand experiences behind the scenes of the revival that broke out at Asbury in February 2023 and the lessons that God taught her through that experience. Are you ready? Let’s go.

Jason Daye 
Hello, friends, and welcome to yet another insightful episode of FrontStage BackStage. I’m super excited about today’s conversation, I’m sure that you’re going to find some incredible encouragement through it. We are proud to be a part of the Pastor Serve Network. Each and every single week, I have the opportunity to sit down with a trusted ministry leader, and we dive into a conversation all in an effort to help you and ministry leaders just like you embrace a healthy rhythm for both your life and your ministry. And not only do we dive into a conversation, but our team also creates a downloadable toolkit that complements every single episode. You can find this toolkit at PastorServe.org/network, and there you will find a number of resources, including our Ministry Leaders Growth Guide. Now, this gives you some insights and some questions pulled directly out of the conversation that you can process through and that you can also take your ministry team at your local church through. So, we encourage you to take advantage of those resources. Now, at Pastor Serve, we love walking alongside pastors and ministry leaders. If you’d like to learn how you can receive a complimentary coaching session, we encourage you to check out PastorServe.org/freesession. Now, if you’re joining us on YouTube, we ask that you give us a thumbs up. Be sure to drop your name and the name of your church in the comments below. We love getting to know our audience better and our team will be praying for you and for your ministry. So be sure to drop comments throughout this conversation if you have questions about what we’re discussing. Now, whether you’re joining us on YouTube or your favorite podcast platform, please be sure to subscribe and follow so you do not miss out on any of these great conversations. As I said, I’m excited for today’s conversation. At this time, I’d like to welcome Sarah Baldwin to the show. Sarah, welcome.

Sarah Baldwin 
Yes. So glad to be here. Really excited to get to talk and share.

Jason Daye 
Yes, I’m excited for you to share your story because you’ve had a unique vantage point of an amazing movement of the Spirit that, as we’re recording, was really just over a year ago now that it all kind of kicked off. Sarah, to kind of begin I would love for you to share a little bit about how you serve the church, your ministry role, and what that is. That will give some of our viewers, if they don’t know yet, a little hint as to what we’re going to talk about.

Sarah Baldwin 
Okay, absolutely. So, I serve in the realm of Christian higher education. I’ve spent my whole life in that place as a university pastor and now as a student affairs administrator, but my heart is pastoral in every way. So, in the campuses that I’ve served, I walk with students and create space for spiritual formation, for them to listen to God, and to support their formation and development in Jesus. So that’s my heart. I love college students. I love young adults, and I’ve really given my whole life’s work to serve that particular population. I’m also a pastor, I have a little micro-church, we call it, that we’ve been walking with and so that’s also the joy of my heart. And I’m an upcoming author, having a book come out about this amazing experience that we’re going to talk about today.

Jason Daye 
Yes, very, very exciting. So, to clue our audience in, where do you currently serve?

Sarah Baldwin 
Yeah, so I’m at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky, that’s right in the middle of the state, and this is year 10 for me in this role here. So, as a part of that role, I get to oversee and be a part of our chapel program, which really takes us back to February 2023.

Jason Daye 
Okay, let’s go back there, Sarah. So February of last year, February 2023. You, your team, and the students engaged and involved, from my understanding, thought they were walking into another chapel service. Another opportunity to worship God together as a campus community. So tell us what happened last February.

Sarah Baldwin 
That’s right. Yeah. So on February 8, 2023, we have chapel Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, it’s required but students can select which ones they go to. So on February 8, 2023, we had a typical chapel service, one of our pastoral team, Zack Meerkreebs spoke that day, we had the gospel choir singing, and different people will tell you different things. Some say that they sensed that it was a really sweet spirit from the very beginning. Some say they didn’t notice anything until afterward. I mean, it’s just all over the place. But nevertheless, about 15 students remained after the end of Chapel, that’s not totally unusual. That does happen every now and then. The worship team continued to play. The students came to the altar, they were singing, and they were entering into worship. And it really sparked on our campus this incredible and spontaneous movement of God. So, over the course of that afternoon, more and more students came to pray, to sing, and to worship. And then, they began to give testimonies of what they were experiencing and how God was moving in their hearts, how they were experiencing the love of Jesus, and how they were being sanctified, reconciled, and restored. And it was incredibly sweet for our students. We, as a staff and faculty, just gathered with them. And we were really in awe of this really beautiful thing God was doing.

Jason Daye 
Yeah, that’s awesome. And so as that was taking place, that first day, February 8th. Then, it continued. What was happening there? I mean, logistically, even. I’m curious, as those of us in ministry, we all know that we love to invite the Holy Spirit in. You know, God. It takes a life of its own, right? So tell us what was unfolding there.

Sarah Baldwin 
Me and the ministry team, our university pastor, were holding logistics and the big picture of our chapel and then working with our worship team coordinator, her name is Madeline. So the three of us, and a few others, were really taking note of what God was doing. But at this point, on February 8, it just seemed like a really sweet space for our students. That’s all we were experiencing. We thought God was pouring out love in a really powerful way and in a way that we really hadn’t ever quite seen before. And students kept coming. I mean, they kept coming and coming and coming. And as that day continued, we saw that students leaving their classes, we saw that they were texting their friends, they were going to different classrooms and knocking on the door saying, you’ve got to come to chapel. God is in Hughes Auditorium, that’s where we have our chapel. You’ve got to come, you’ve got to come. It was this organic movement. But again, we still were just like, this is super cool. But that evening, a few of us gathered underneath the auditorium, and we kind of talked about that moment as perhaps our first “Yes.” Because as we gathered there, we thought, what is God doing and we decided we would leave it. We discerned that we would leave the space open all night. And so I immediately started texting our staff, come on, let’s see if we can just scaffold and steward what we see God doing with our students. So we left the auditorium open all night, kind of thinking that by the morning, students would be done or it would be winding down. But much to our surprise, throughout that night and into the next day students from other universities started to arrive, we guessed from hearing about it from our students via text, Instagram, and eventually TikTok. So it started beginning to take on some momentum, and more and more students and then community members came to pray with our students and support them. We saw students coming from other colleges and universities, and by a couple of days into this, we were really wondering What is God doing? So we logistically started setting up a plan to provide as much support as we could. People began bringing food without being asked, people showed up with all kinds of pizza and Chick-fil-A and crock pots of food, and they set up a meal train for the people who were serving the students. All of that without even being requested. So that happened all over that weekend. But instead of slowing down as we assumed, I kept saying to everyone, surely we’ve reached the crest, like surely, how many more people could possibly come? But over the course of that weekend, we began to realize that there was something else going on far beyond our little University. And then from that point on it was people coming from other states, people showing up and sharing it on YouTube, even though that wasn’t our heart’s desire for them to do that. We were trying to keep that space kind of special and holy. Not that it wasn’t holy on YouTube, but we’re just trying to keep it really present to what God was doing there. And then it just lit around the world. And by the end of our 16 days, we saw, that we know of, over 300 different universities and colleges represented, over 30 states, over 13 countries, and people came from all corners. We estimate conservatively at least 50,000. But it was probably more. I mean, it was tons of people and we were totally surprised. So we began to just scaffold and build a ministry team, an altar ministry team, a logistical team, and a feeding team. Just really day by day, hour by hour, actually, text by text.

Jason Daye 
Wow, that’s amazing, Sarah. What an awesome movement of God. Super exciting. Now, you used a phrase in there and you just kind of alluded to it again, scaffolding and stewarding. So that was your heart’s posture in the midst of this. Let’s dive into that a little bit because God’s at work all around the world. And you know, the Spirit is moving. But every now and then we encounter it in a more tangible way, maybe. I mean, we see the expression in a really sincere way. And that’s what you guys were encountering. And you as ministry leaders were in this posture of scaffolding and stewarding. So talk to us a little bit about what you mean by that.

Sarah Baldwin 
I’m really glad you asked because that is at the heart of the experience for me and what we saw. So as the days were going in those first couple days, and then building we developed this little ministry team of people, our university pastor, worship teams, we call them stewards. I’ll share why in a moment. A few friends of Asbury and the university, people that just seemed to come together. So there were about eight of us originally, we didn’t actually all know each other. We weren’t even all from Asbury, most of us were. We were in different roles in the university setting. And we came together and we all recognized that God is doing something that is not under our control. I mean, I think that’s probably obvious, but we were just overwhelmed. And also, in a good way, it was as though we were standing under this outpouring of the love of God like the weight of his glory was sitting with us in that space. And so our initial response to that was really, I mean, on our knees, like what is God doing? And we didn’t want to get in the way. One thing that was really unique about this experience is that our whole Asbury community, and many other people, eventually hundreds of people, but the initial group of people, everyone had the same sense that God was doing something, we didn’t have to twist anyone’s arm. We didn’t have to say, Oh, sure, you can feel it, or do you feel the same thing I do? There was this unanimous sense this consensus that God was doing something. And our response was, we get to be doorkeepers. Like, we don’t really know or understand what God is about here. We just recognize that God is working. And so we did, we felt the steward language come pretty quickly because none of us really wanted to be seen as being in charge. We weren’t in charge. I think we all kind of had that Holy fear and trembling, kind of like, do you remember like, don’t touch the Ark of the Covenant? Don’t touch it,  just hold it with such awe, respect, and honor. So that was our posture. Just how do we scaffold and hold to what God was doing? And I can say more about how that logistically worked out if you want.

Jason Daye 
Yeah, I think we might want to tiptoe into a little bit of that. I think it’s fascinating. You share this in your new book Generation Awakened, just this posture about, as you said, we can all as you’re talking, I think every single person watching and listening is kind of sensing that same thing, like what is it to be in that space? And to feel like, okay, on one hand, I don’t want to mess this thing up, right? I mean, I don’t want to get in the way of the spirit, right? God’s at work. But how do we come alongside? And how do we not manage anything but as you said, steward? How do we serve in the midst of what the Holy Spirit is doing? And I would imagine that as things began to develop, that there were some challenges and probably some questions that you and your team were asking one another. What do we do about this? What do we do about that? I know specifically, I think many of us when we look back at last year, remember that there was this almost a concern that people were going to try to take it and make it something that it wasn’t, right? And so I know you had to have been wrestling with that. So help us, Sarah, what were some of those challenges? What were some of those questions that you guys were processing through?

Sarah Baldwin 
Well, as I said before, we were in this unique situation not being a church, right? Asbury is a Wesleyan Holiness Institution. That’s how our theological roots are. And so our team was all generally a part of that tradition. But we were ordained in different denominations and we had different experiences. So we really saw that God was doing something, first, with our students. And so what we saw in those first 24 to 48 hours became our plumb line to test everything by. It was like, well, we saw God do this, it seemed as though God was stirring the hearts of this young generation, and students were flocking to it. And initially, this was what God was doing for young adults. And there was something really precious that God was stirring in them and through them. And then it was as though the rest of us, myself included, got to pull up a seat to the table, we got to put our candle in the light of what God was doing with our students with these young people. So that became really the way that we tested everything against because like I said, we didn’t have a lot of history of ministering together to say this is the way we’ve done things before. I mean, we had our Asbury tradition, certainly. But we were all trying to come at this bringing our own experiences and our own way that we saw God moving. And so in those first 24 to 48 hours, there were some things that were really clear to us. One was simple preaching, one was kneeling at the altar with a posture of surrender to Jesus, but also the space to pray at the altar with full surrender and full submission to Jesus. We saw simple worship, very unproduced, there was not a big drum kit, and there weren’t even lyrics on the screen. The worship team was even located over to the side when all of this began to move. And so we just held it. That, we felt, was our role and commitment. It was we will hold how we saw God work. So together, that was what we tested everything against. And so we’ve heard kind of a lot. We called it being fierce and gentle. We had the heart to be gentle, like a shepherd, but we were really fierce about it to the point that I remember one time someone came in and said, I think the lights are a little bit different. We’re like, Okay, please return the lights. And I don’t mean to say that there was this magical thing or that if the lights had been different, I don’t know that that was really the spiritually important thing. But I think just as a testimony to the fact that we were so serious about this is how we saw God work. We heard testimonies, we heard confession, there was simple preaching, and there was a simple style of worship. And there was an emphasis on Generation Z, on this young generation. So those were the things that we held. And we tested that out in real-time, hour to hour, together with a lot of prayer and tears and just challenging one another. Like, how do we hold this and steward what we saw God doing?

Jason Daye 
Yeah, yeah. I love that. Because you were stewarding and you were almost kind of protecting that sacred space in a way, you know? And felt that was kind of your calling, your responsibility, it seems in that moment that you were there. You’re witnessing this but you were wanting to kind of protect it for the students because that’s where it was birthed from which I love.

Sarah Baldwin 
Yeah. And really believing that God was doing something unique and special, but always doing what God does. I mean, this is the way God moves, right? God covers us and fills us with love and we respond to His Holiness. So there were multiple things along that journey. Everything from, I remember that first weekend, we had people that showed up who were bringing their own revival style that just wasn’t the style or the expression that we had been experiencing with our students. So whether it was things like shofars, flags, or worshipped dancing. Those are all can be wonderful and great expressions but we felt very fierce about this is how we saw God work. And so we just asked people to put those away or to do those outside. Not in a way, hopefully, that anyone experienced, there was no judgment in it because those things are wonderful expressions of how God works. But we were very committed. And then as time went on, we had people, good, well, meaning wonderful people who felt like the Holy Spirit had given them a word, that this was something that they had been told by God to share with the community. And our group made a commitment that no one had the mic unless we all were in consensus about it. And so we tested that out with each other regularly. And so the reality was that it was just a very small number of people that preached. Along the way, we had the opportunity to have big-name, Christian celebrity people come in and preach. Wonderful people and people that I trust, right? Or we could think about, who would be wonderful to preach. And again, not against anyone, but just Okay, let’s hold to how we saw God work, and how God moved in those first few hours. We were just so strong about that. And I think it was because that was what we had. That was our shared experience of what God was doing. So yeah, there were some critical moments, I think, but I looked back, and I think, wow if we had made a different decision, it could have happened a lot differently. But thanks be to God that we just shared that sense that this was God’s, it was not ours.

Jason Daye 
Yeah, that’s good. It sounds like you were being prayerfully intentional in ensuring that nothing would distract from what the Spirit was doing. I mean, as you said, different things coming in, different forms of worship, perhaps, or whatever. Or even as you said, big-name speakers coming in. All of that could potentially distract from what the Spirit is doing, and not that you’re against any of those things, but it’s just that, again, it goes back to stewardship. That you weren’t you were stewarding that moment in some beautiful ways. Sarah, I would love to hear what, so there are some questions and some challenges. We can all sense that tension. I can only imagine going up to someone who’s there, drove all this way, they’re excited, and they pull out their shofar. And you’re like, maybe not here, maybe out in the courtyard. I can only imagine having to engage in those conversations. But share with us a little bit, Sarah, what are some things that really stood out to you that you really learned, as a pastor, as a ministry leader, and as someone who was kind of serving during this time? What are some of the lessons or things that God taught you through this?

Sarah Baldwin 
You know, there’s been several that I’ve really been reflecting on over this last year and growing in. We were in so much survival during those days that we kept saying, I think we’re learning. I think we’re learning this together. But it’s taken a little bit of space and reflection to see okay, what was that and what did I learn? What did we see with our own eyes? One big theme that was really important during those days and it’s still shaping me a lot is this idea of consecration over talent. And we saw that from the very beginning in our worship teams and our music leadership. There were times over those days when our two main worship stewards, Madeline and Ben Black, really listened to the heart of God, as best they could, along with some others, to discern who would be leading us in singing. And almost entirely, it was young adults who led us. Most of the time, these young adults had not even been in a band together before. I mean, they were really like pulling people together who had varying musical abilities and talents. And there was a time when not a single worship musician came onto the stage before spending some time in the space listening to God, but then also being in this consecration space, where they were prayed over, with, and through for as long as it took. Like, sometimes it was an hour, sometimes it was two hours, or it was 25 minutes. But there was a team of people who prayed over these young adult worship leaders and there was some really sweet spiritual work that happened there. And so there was no green room. There was no like, Okay, you’re on in 10 minutes, let’s get ready. They were there to pray and then our worship stewards would kind of, you might think of it like someone’s subbing in for a basketball team. They would just move, okay, this drummer would come in and out, sometimes in the middle of songs, this guitar player would come in and out, or this music leader. And there was not an emphasis on who was the most musical, who was most talented, or who had the best voice. It was really about the heart. And that was true for the whole thing. Those of us who got to preach and speak were not the finest voices, the best communicators out there, or the most distinguished speakers. I mean, certainly, there was some great preaching that happened. But it was not about who was the most talented. It was really about the geography of the heart and the surrender of the heart. And that’s been staying with me a lot over this space. What does it look like to be consecrated, to spend that place in the prayer closet, that place with Jesus? That is about my heart being right, first and foremost, over anything else, or over any kind of talent. And how do I look, see, and respond to worship team ministry people, looking at their hearts over their talents? So that was one of the things.

Jason Daye 
Yeah, absolutely. I absolutely love that. Sarah, as you guys were ministering, serving, and experiencing the spirit through this whole process you were noticing God at work in these different ways. Are there particular things that stood out to you that, obviously, it was a different experience over those two-plus weeks, right? That different experience. But what are things that stood out to you that are somehow shaping ministry moving forward for you, or even for the campus there at Asbury?

Sarah Baldwin 
Oh, what a wonderful question. Well, certainly, that idea of consecration and heart, the location of the heart over talent is something that we’re still really wrestling with. There were some other themes. One was unity. In that core leadership team, the ministry leader team, we had Gen Z represented to boomers. It was multi-generational, it was women and men together in partnership. The worship teams were like 98%, I would say, multi-ethnic, and our team, over time. became multi-ethnic because we recognized that we really needed every generation. We needed the people around the table to be coming from different perspectives, nationalities, ethnicities, and experiences. So Unity, like how do we come together? And you know, Unity gets a lot of buzz, right? But the kind of unity I’m talking about is, for a Christian, it’s not just aspirational. It’s part of our identity but it starts at the cross. Our unity comes together in the surrender to Jesus. So that is the beginning of the unified life. So I think that working out what our faith is together as a group of people who are unified in Jesus at the foot of the cross, I think is been something I knew in my head, but it has been coming into my heart in a new way. But looking back, I’m really thinking of, in my role at Asbury, or in any ministry role, I’m thinking how do we pull generational voices together? How do we hear from across the generations? Then also recognizing that our Gen Z, our young adults, really need this kind of spiritual mentoring and even spiritual parenting. The older generation really needs the blessing, the affirmation, and love of the younger generation. So unity and consecration. I think that the step-by-step obedience, another big theme has been saying yes to Jesus step-by-step without knowing the end game. That has been a significant part of our story because we said yes with just a glimmer of holy imagination. I mean, I think if God had asked me or asked anyone, would you be willing to host 50,000 people on your campus? I really think we would have said, No. It just felt too big, too crazy, too unsafe, too much money, like how can we possibly do that? But God didn’t ask us that. The Holy Spirit was like, Would you be willing? Would you be willing to host a worship service overnight? Would you be willing to staff this? Would you be willing to bring a pot of soup? I mean, it was just really small things that built on one another. Then the last thing I would say is really learning about how God takes. God does not ask us what we do not have to give but asks all of what we have. And so it was loaves and fish. So much of an energy and heart in resources. And again, and again, it was almost comical, we would be like, God, we’re out of water. And somebody would show up with a pallet of water. Lord, we don’t have enough volunteers then we’d have volunteers to run out of the door, I mean, run into the door, and we began to kind of change our expectation. Like, Oh, God, is at work. Like, we can expect that God will be at work.

Jason Daye 
That’s awesome, Sarah. I love it. What an incredible experience for you and thank you for putting pen to paper and inviting all of us in with your new book Generation Awakened. Just the excitement of hearing more and learning more about what God was doing during that time. Super exciting. Sarah, if you could offer up some words of encouragement to brothers and sisters who are serving on the frontlines of ministry right now, what words would you like to share with them?

Sarah Baldwin 
Yeah, in my own journey, I’m learning so much about how God takes what I have to offer and multiplies it and that I can trust the Holy Spirit. That I don’t have to have all of the talent, I don’t have to have all of the resources, all of the time, or all of the energy. My own story I think is like wanting to have enough and just recognizing that I’m not enough. And being in that kind of space of, How can I do whatever it is you’re asking me to do, God? I have children to take care of, I have a job, I have challenges, and I am limited. But the Holy Spirit takes your limitations, blesses them, and breaks them for the sake of the world. And it is not about us having all the time or all the talent, all the wisdom, all the hours of ministry, or all the money to invest in ministry. It is about, it’s like the widow’s mites in the temple, right? Like, here’s the one to watch, when the person gives all they have. That is what the Holy Spirit blesses and uses to feed the multitudes. So I hope that people will be encouraged to know that is not about how much, but it is about the heart. Jesus looks at the heart and then blesses what we give and multiplies it.

Jason Daye 
I love that, Sarah. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. Thank you so much for hanging out with us.

Sarah Baldwin 
Oh, a delight, a total delight. Thank you.

Jason Daye 
Excellent, excellent. Love hearing the story. And for those of you who are watching or listening along, you can learn more about Generation Awakened, which is Sarah’s account of this incredible movement of the spirit, which is super fascinating. And learn more about Sarah and her ministry there at Asbury. And you can find that in the toolkit for this episode at PastorServe.org/network. So be sure to check that out. Sarah, it was an absolute joy to have you and to hear how God’s at work and praying for God to continue to be doing what he’s doing. Thank you so much, Sarah. God bless you.

Sarah Baldwin 
Thank you, Jason.

Jason Daye
Now, before you go, I want to remind you of an incredible free resource that our team puts together every single week to help you and your team dig more deeply and maximize the conversation that we just had. This is the weekly toolkit that we provide. And we understand that it’s one thing to listen or watch an episode, but it’s something entirely different to actually take what you’ve heard, what you’ve watched, what you’ve seen, and apply it to your life and to your ministry. You see, FrontStage BackStage is more than just a podcast or YouTube show about ministry leadership, we are a complete resource to help train you and your entire ministry team as you seek to grow and develop in life in ministry. Every single week, we provide a weekly toolkit which has all types of tools in it to help you do just that. Now you can find this at PastorServe.org/network. That’s PastorServe.org/network. And there you will find all of our shows, all of our episodes and all of our weekly toolkits. Now inside the toolkit are several tools including video links and audio links for you to share with your team. There are resource links to different resources and tools that were mentioned in the conversation, and several other tools, but the greatest thing is the ministry leaders growth guide. Our team pulls key insights and concepts from every conversation with our amazing guests. And then we also create engaging questions for you and your team to consider and process, providing space for you to reflect on how that episode’s topic relates to your unique context, at your local church, in your ministry and in your life. Now you can use these questions in your regular staff meetings to guide your conversation as you invest in the growth of your ministry leaders. You can find the weekly toolkit at PastorServe.org/network We encourage you to check out that free resource. Until next time, I’m Jason Daye encouraging you to love well, live well, and lead well. God bless.

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