Jr. High -

‘I watch my kids grow here’ —

By Becca Haines

Middle schooler Kaitlyn Anderson said she was having a blast at MIX, and whenever she felt convicted about anything, she could easily talk to her small group leader – who just happened to also be her mom.

Laura Anderson has served as a small group leader for the past five years with Northside Christian Church in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Not only has she cared for the students under her watch at CIY events, but all four of her children, as well.

 

“I love spending time with the kids, and MIX is always a great time to develop friendships so we can go into deeper conversations,” Laura said. “Seeing all the kids together like this gives me hope for the future of the Church. This is our future – they’ll be leaders of our church. And to think they have the potential to change the world is just awesome. I believe we need to invest in them now.”

 

At MIX, that investment can look like cutting loose with young people in a game, or exploring deep Biblical truths. Kaitlyn said the messages from stage have prompted her heart toward a closer relationship with Jesus.

 

“There have been some things this week that have changed my perspective, and that was one of them,” Kaitlyn said. “It made me think about my relationship with Him, and what it means for it to be more personal.”

 

These moments create unique opportunities for Laura to serve as both a mom and a small group leader – something she said she doesn’t take for granted.

 

“It’s so fun to see her be goofy with her friends, but I’ve also seen her be a leader in her group,” Laura said. “I’ve seen her grow and step out to encourage the girls to do the right thing or stay together. It’s a privilege to get to see that because not every parent gets that chance. I watch my kids grow here.”

 

This year’s MIX tour is in full-swing and will conclude Aug. 7-10 in Ellensburg, Washington. Find more information about CIY’s summer conference for middle schoolers here.