Rebekah Cowling’s Story

Written By: Rebekah Cowling


April 16, 2024

I found the Leadership Institute during my senior year at Moody Bible Institute. God was calling me into student ministry and I knew I needed more experience, so after constant prayer, I applied. When the student team at Troy reached out to me and asked if I wanted to join their team, I was excited—even though I had yet to figure out my housing arrangements. I knew God was calling me there, so I followed His calling despite not having all the details sorted out yet. I knew He would make a way and open a place for me to stay.

On May 19, 2022, my mom and I got in my Toyota Corolla with all my stuff and drove to Michigan from San Diego. At the time, the Lord opened a door for me to live with my college roommate’s parents, who were only 10 minutes away from the church. They opened their home to me and offered me a place to stay, allowing me to be able to follow everything the Lord was calling me to. During the first six months, my time in student ministry was extremely hard. I spent a lot of my time feeling alone, trying to develop a new community, and getting to know a new work team. However, during that hard season of learning, God taught me several important things: true dependence on Him in all things, how to stand up for myself, and an understanding that working for a church is hard work. God was molding and shaping me into the strong, confident woman that I was meant to be. If everything had been easy, I would not be where I am today. 

When my first year as a resident came to an end last March, God opened another door for me. I was approached with the opportunity to lead student ministry at the Plymouth campus, so I decided to pray and take the interview. Almost immediately after, I knew that God was calling me to continue serving as a second-year resident at Woodside. My time serving at the Plymouth Campus and leading student ministry has been fun! Serving at a smaller campus has allowed me to experience many different aspects of ministry while really getting to know the congregation. The students are amazing, and they extend a lot of grace since we are all learning together.  

God has continued to mold and shape me during my second year as a resident. Throughout my time in the Leadership Institute, I’ve been able to meet so many different interns, residents, and staff members. Thursday morning intensives are something that I look forward to every week. Im grateful that I’ve been allowed to serve this church, and I 100% recommend this program to anyone interested in pursuing ministry. Thank you, Woodside, for believing in the next generation to spread the Gospel to the ends of the earth.