Well, guess what today's post is about? Yepp -- a mini-interview with Susie Shellenberger! With questions submitted by you and me (and Nancy Rue!), Susie took a minute to sit down and answer them...
Oh, and if you've missed our other Mini-Interviews, click HERE to be taken to the interviews with Nancy Rue and Melody Carlson.
Okay, here goes...
How did you get started in ministering teen girls?
I began volunteering as a youth worker for a large church’s youth group when I was a college student. After graduating from college, I then became a youth pastor and served fulltime in four different churches before getting my masters degree in creative writing and teaching in the public school system. I taught high school drama, speech, creative writing and English.
Do you have any teenage daughters yourself?
No. I’ve never been married.
When did you realize that your life’s purpose was to work with teen girls – and how did you actually know?
Since my high school years, I sensed God calling me into youth ministry and knew I’d share His Truth through speaking and writing.
Where do you stand in your spiritual growth?
Intimacy with Christ is always my ultimate goal. I pray for an unquenchable thirst for His Word. And as I read the Bible, I grow spiritually from His guidance and His voice to me.
How do you know the right thing to say to struggling teen girls? In the "Dear Susie" colum of your magazine, you always give such good advice.
I lean on what the Bible says. Though it may not mention a specific topic (such as dating or tp-ing someone’s house), there are always principles to which we can live our lives according to His Word
What’s your “life” verse, from the Bible?
Habakkuk 2:3. I like the way it’s worded in The Living Bible the most: “But these things I plan won’t happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, do not despair, for these things will surely come to pass. Just be patient. They will not be overdue a single day.”
This reminds me that when I personally want to “hurry up God,” that I’m foolish not to wait on His perfect timing. He’s never early. He’s never late. He is ALWAYS right on time. Every SINGLE time!
Another life verse is: “Now glory be to God who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of—infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes” (Ephesians 3:20 The Living Bible).
This reminds me that God dreams BIG dreams for me! And even the biggest dream I have for myself is small in comparison to what He wants to do in and through me.
When you see a person, what’s the first thing you notice about them?
Probably eyes and shoes. I love shoes, but I always make eye contact first.
What’s the one thing you buy all the time, and you have a whole drawer full of them?
Socks. I love colorful socks. I have four drawers full.
Who would you say has been the best friend in your entire life – out of them all? :)
God has truly blessed me with some genuine friends who will remain friends for life! It’s a gift I never take for granted, and each one is so special, it would be extremely difficult to try and categorize them into “Best” or “Bestest.”
And...the final question, from Nancy Rue: Are you EVER gonna come to Tennessee to see me?!
I love Nancy and Jim Rue! They’re such a fun couple! They live on a lake and have a boat, and their place is really spectacular. I stayed with her a few years ago when I was in Nashville to interview Rebecca St. James. Nancy and I both love dogs . . .so I enjoyed hugging on her THREE black labs. They’ve since gone to doggie heaven, but I hear she’s considering getting a new puppy. When she does . . . I’ll need to come stay with her and help her get him house-broken!
Thanks, Susie! Girlz, be sure to comment and tell me what you think, and if you enjoyed the interview! And tell me who you'd like to be interviewed next, too. :)