My name is Sarah Beth Tankersley, and I am an intern at Hayesville First United Methodist Church. I have interned at this church for three years now, and my church duties have evolved over the years. Currently I assist with Sunday morning liturgy, k-2 Sunday school, Sunday night youth, and even help with the tech aspects of Sunday morning worship. I have always been involved in the church growing up, and, when I got to college and had opportunity to serve regularly as a church intern, I knew this was something for me.
It is crazy how God can place opportunities before you to learn more about his calling—all you have to do is just say YES. Before starting my internship at Hayesville First, I though I was going to graduate with my degree in Psychology and go on to be a divorce counselor. This, however, was not God’s plan.
After saying YES to this internship, I was able to learn more about my self as a leader and as a group facilitator. I realize that I am more of relational person, thriving on personal conversations and interactions. The more I worked with the kids, the more I realized my passion for young people and their families. Here I am three years later applying to graduate programs for Social Work with emphasis in Community Development with desires to empower and encourage young people to be their best self and, in doing this, empowering the community as a whole.
Just by saying YES to one experience opened the door to many opportunities to learn more about my self and my place in the church and also in the outside world. The beauty of this all is the church is not just confined to four walls. This is something that Hayesville First has also shown me. Their involvement in the community—whether it is participating in the community garden at the Hinton Center or traveling to Atlanta to serve at a soup kitchen—shows how Hayesville First is saying YES to God’s greater calling of going and making disciples. A YES perspective is something to be admired, and, from the influence of this church, I can now say YES to my future calling.