If you are looking for an energetic, passionate speaker that creates interactive activities for your group, I would be a good fit for you. I have been walking beside people providing Solutions for Life and presenting for groups as small as 30 and as large as 1000 for over 20 years professionally. I’m also a licensed professional counselor leading a team of over 15 counselors as the Clinical Director and Founder of Community Counseling Associates. For more information about the counseling center and my clinical bio visit www.communitycounselingassociates.com.
I am the mom of a nine year old boy and twelve year old girl and believe that parenting is one of my highest current callings. I am passionate about discipling them as well as equipping them to not only be successful in their endeavors but to also become great people of character who love God. I’ve been married to their father Drew for 17 years. We married later in life and struggled with infertility so we are super grateful to call ourselves a family that loves to have fun! Drew is a healthcare consultant who travels often so sometimes I feel like a single mom. (Although I know many married people can feel the same with their spouse in town beside them.) Drew and I make dating a priority because we believe a loving, messy marriage is one of the best gifts we can give our children. I, like most women today, struggle with juggling family priorities, work and making my own spiritual growth, mental well being and physical fitness a priority. On another note, it seems no matter how many books I’ve read and how much help I receive, I may always have a clean but somewhat disorganized house. I seem to always choose to go and do or – as we believers in the south like to call it – “fellowship” over household tasks.
As someone who’s been speaking professionally for over twenty years, I’ve traveled throughout the country and spoken on numerous topics. In the past few years, I’ve joined the faculties of the Speak Up Conference and She Speaks equipping other speakers from around the nation. You can learn more about my specific topics and events in my speaking section. I’ve spoken to groups of women, students, parents, moms and entire congregations and love designing messages as well as bringing previously prepared work to a group to make their planning a little easier. As a professional counselor for over 20 years, I am well versed in equipping people to manage difficult emotions and speak often about boundaries, self control, anger, sadness and stress. As a graduate of Exchanged Life Ministries Advanced training, I have a passion for teaching that embracing a strong identity in Christ is the greatest key for gaining positive self worth and creating lasting life change. As a ministry student at Baylor University, student at Dallas Theological Seminary and doctoral student in Biblical Counseling and Women’s studies at Trinity seminary, I am well equipped to dig deep into scripture and theology having taken courses in Greek, Old and New Testament, Systematic Theology, Evangelism, Homelitics and Exegesis, and Spiritual Life as well as Biblical Conflict Resolution, Family Counseling and Women’s Issues. I have also served as a teaching assistant at Criswell Bible College and adjunct professor in Marriage and Family at Dallas Christian College.
An undergrad English major and previous High School English teacher, I like to write but struggle to find the time to do so. I’m currently serving as the Mental Health Columnist for Just Between Us magazine. I’ve been a professional contributor in the book Love Extravagently: Making the Modern Marriage Work by Marita Littauer and my latest article “Wired for Success” is published in Parent Life Magazine and was also recently feature on the MOPS blog “hello dearest.” I love providing Solutions for life on the radio and have been on Smart Talk with Trey Graham on THE WORD FM 100.7. To hear these interviews, click here. I enjoy blogging as well, but with a business and children, it’s something I’m learning to discipline myself towards. I am currently working on a book project on equipping parents to proactively talk with their children about topics such as friendships, depression, anxiety, self harm, transgender children, sexuality, eating disorders and other difficult topics. I feel like we as a culture have focused on don’t have sex and don’t do drugs and have missed a lot of teachable moments.
I grew up in a family where ministry was a way of life. I’m the oldest of four kids and after we went to college, my parents joined Mission Aviation Fellowship where my dad coordinated distance education projects and my parents lived overseas much of my young adulthood. He still serves on several ministry boards and my mom is active in women’s leadership in a local church still passionately discipling others. My sister Melissa Spoelstra is a well known pastor’s wife and the author of 6 nationally published Bible Studies (carried in LifeWay stores) and a soon to be released parenting book with Abingdon Press. My younger sister is married to a pastor in South Dakota.
As an active member of Kingdom of God since I was a kid, I have been fortunate to have been personally mentored by some great leaders of today such Reggie McNeal (a published church leader who teaches on missional leadership) and Louie Giglio whom I volunteered for at Baylor University during my college years and was sent by his group to England to do evangelism. I am a huge fan of John Townsend’s and Henry Cloud’s teaching on Boundaries and have been personally trained by them in their curriculum as well as marriage leaders such John Gottman, Harville Hendrix and Helen Hunt, and Sue Johnson. In my 20s and 30s, I served on several church staffs in roles involving youth, children, singles, women and small group ministries.
Returning to more personal topics, I also previously homeschooled my two children two days a week in partnership with Lucas Christian Academy, a university model school. Three years ago my husband’s twin sister and her husband both were diagnosed with cancer within two weeks of one another. You can read more of their journey here – cancerx2.weebly.com. Because of this life change in our family and other callings and demands, my children attended public school and one has remained while my oldest has returned to LCA. I’m currently an active member in our local church previously serving on our Sunday School leadership team, leading small group women’s Bible studies, encouraging the local church as a lay speaker and signing with the church praise team when in town.