Detroit Bound!

I have mentioned in a few other places that I have been accepted for a position at Kensington Church  in suburban Detroit. I’ll explain.

Anyone who has been around me for any amount of time recently knows that I have been quite eager to begin what I call my “real life.” Basically, I have grown quite anxious and tired of this holding pattern that I have been on lately, and was ready to dive in to doing Kingdom work in a more official capacity. I began looking at some of the places that I have wanted to go: San Francisco, Detroit and Nashville.

I messaged some of my friends in those areas and asked for leads on jobs, living and such. Several people replied with some good suggestions including my friend Kate who sent me the link to Kensington’s job website. Listed were some jobs that I thought I could probably be good at, but weren’t anything I was excited about: Administrative assistant to the youth minister, photocopier for the children’s minister, etc. Like I said, nothing I was excited about but being a good administrator, something that I thought I could do well.

A couple days later I get a phone call from a guy named Dan. Dan explains to me that all of the jobs that I had applied for were already filled. He did however seem interested in my resume and the things that I wanted to do with my life. We talked a bit, a couple of times and the short of it is that I accepted an internship at Kensington where I will be interning with a church plant in the inner city areas of Detroit.

Here are a couple of thoughts on this whole thing:

1) I’m nervous. In the words of Ron Burgundy, “That escalated quickly.” I want to church plant in an urban center, so I applied for a couple of jobs that I wasn’t as excited about so that I could be in an urban center. However, those jobs were full and my resume landed in the hands of the right person who thought I had potential to help with a church plant. Despite that, there is still a good amount of anxiety and caution about the work. I think that’s healthy.

2) I know this is a God thing. I am finding it hard for this random sequence of events (few opportunities in other areas, less than ideal jobs are all full, resume lands in the hand of the guy who can make it happen, he likes me enough to offer me a job) to be coincidental. I think God knows what I want to do, what I am gifted for and what my future holds and fast-tracked me into a position. Being that it is a God thing, I know two things, 1) I am going to grow a lot, and 2) that will be really hard, but good for me.

3) Reactions are mixed. My mom is concerned for safety. My dad thinks going North is about the worst idea ever. My friends in Detroit are excited. My friends here are sad. I see where they are all coming from.

The internship is unpaid, so I will need to raise my support on my own. This means drafting letters, sending emails, making calls and going to churches to tell them what I am doing. This means that in the next few months I will be doing a lot of traveling, talking, writing and conversing with different people who can help me make this possible. I am sure all of that will make its way to the pages of this blog in the coming weeks.

If anyone has any good suggestions on how to raise funds for something like this, that would be greatly appreciated.

As always, pray for the work that I am doing and that my walk may benefit others in the Detroit area.

I will have more updates soon.

If you’d like to know a little more about the city (outside of the things you hear on TV) and the kind of work that I will be doing, check out these links:

Detroit Reverse
Vision 360
Jonny Knoxville’s documentary on Detroit

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About coleyoakum

My name is Coleman Yoakum. I am formerly a student at Harding University. Today you can find me in Detroit Michigan doing what I can to expand the Kingdom of God and preparing to start an intentional community in Pontiac. I enjoy reading, writing, photography, music and politics. I am sure that all of these things will find their way to this blog from time to time. Twitter: coleyoakum Facebook: Coleman Yoakum Email: coleyoakum@gmail.com Flickr: flickr.com/photos/coleyoakum/

6 responses to “Detroit Bound!”

  1. Marisa Lynn says :

    Goodluck, coleman! I will be praying for you! I know God is going to use you in some awesome ways!

  2. Jon Maxwell says :

    I’m excited for you and for the work you’re going to do in a city that is in much need of healing. And, of course, you’re always welcome to give me a call if you need someone to hang out with and show you around a bit.

  3. Nelson Shake says :

    I think this is fantastic. I’m encouraged to hear about what God does. Your wisdom and maturity show in your willingness to be realistic about the potential difficulty of the situation ahead, and yet, rather than anxiety being the overarching tone of your writing, I hear coming out (more than anything else) a confidence in God’s hand moving in your life. You are a good man, and you have your future in my prayers.

    • coleyoakum says :

      Nels,
      Anxiety is very much there, but you’re right. But it is overcome with a level of calm that comes with know that this is what I am supposed to be doing. And even though it is kind of a scary thing, I am pretty pumped about it.

      Thanks for the prayers friend!

  4. Tru-Structure says :

    Hey Coleman,

    I am a resident of Michigan and I stumbled upon your blog while I was sort of searching for possible pictures of Detroit for my blog! It is very random. I could not help but notice that you are a Christian moving to Detroit because you feel that God has a call on your life. Well, I feel a very strong call to the city of Detroit myself. I think some people look at me cross-eyed when I tell them this, but when a person has a call it just does not matter.

    I am currently writing a blog on the development of Detroit spiritually and physically. The physical/business side of the blog is what I am developing first, and I assume God will lead me into the spiritual side in due time.

    If your still blogging then please say “hi.” Also, check out my blog if you’d like. It is: trustructure.wordpress.com.

    I pray that all of your endeavors are working out well.

    God bless,

    Aaron

  5. Reg says :

    Coleman,

    Good luck and God bless you in your venture.

    I went To Saint Anne’s Catholic School in the 1950’s and have not returned since 1959 when my Dad moved the family to California. I am my sixties now and have a desire to visit and do some waterfront landscape photography of Detroit and the Ambassador Bridge.

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