Approaching my final days as president of WMU of Texas, I’ve been reflecting on the journey that brought me to my election in 2019. What a great journey it has been!
Heritage: First, I am grateful for my WMU heritage that began before I was born. My mother, Cleota Lenert (a native Texan), was always involved in WMU as I grew up in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. Whether in church, association, or state, she loved serving the Lord through WMU. When I was little, I remember her loading several cars and taking the Young Women’s Auxiliary to Ridgecrest WMU Week in North Carolina each summer. Mother was always mentoring women and equipping many to use their spiritual gifts through WMU. Dad created the visuals mom used for her speaking or teaching responsibilities. I also helped from time to time.
Experiences: I tagged along with mom to her various WMU programs in the church and the association, especially during my Girls Auxiliary (GA) days. One highlight was attending the Florida WMU Annual Meetings. I was especially excited to attend the annual meeting when she was elected president of Florida WMU.
I loved being in Sunbeams, GA’s, Acteens®, Baptist Young Women, and the pilot of Campus Baptist Young Women during seminary. I felt very fortunate to be Southwestern Seminary’s first summer intern with national WMU. What an eye-opening experience! Then, leading conferences at “Houseparty” and other WMU training opportunities around Texas opened many doors. Being a pastor’s wife, I was able to start, strengthen, and expand missions discipleship in each of the churches we served. I never felt the Lord calling me to be a missionary overseas, but I did sense His calling to train our churches in missions discipleship for all ages. I have been so honored to serve as president of WMU of Texas and vice president of national WMU for the past four years. Half of my tenure was during the pandemic (some have called me the “Pandemic President”) when we learned to stretch our creativity to carry on the work of WMU of Texas via Zoom.
Relationships: I wouldn’t take anything for the relationships I have formed through the years because of WMU. Friendships from a lifetime of serving together, meeting needs, and sharing the love of Christ with others. I lack the space to share the many ways WMU has transformed my life through six decades of preparing “for such a time as this.” (Esther 4:14)