Current issue

August 2024

  • Singing Hearts and Soaring Hearts
  • A new retreat at Kilmalieu
Home  >  Features  >  'Enriched by the Love of God'

Features

'Enriched by the Love of God'

Friday September 8 2023

Amy Tanner, Children and Family worker at New Laigh Kirk, Kilmarnock, describes her faith journey.


When I was 17, I was asked by my minister to join my local church’s youth group as a volunteer leader.

At the time, I believed in God, but had no connection with the church or religion of any kind, however, I would say this was when my journey of faith really began. From volunteering and along with a group of young people aged 16-20, we were led by our minister and youth worker to dive deeper into faith and this in turn led us all to join the church.

After I graduated from university, I worked as a youth worker for a church in Glasgow, which then led me to my current post as Children and Family worker with New Laigh Kirk in Kilmarnock. Working with children and families in our church, in our community and in the local schools has been such a rewarding experience for me and drives my personal faith more each year.

As my journey of faith develops, I’ve discovered a sense of separation between faith and religion. I’ve attended Church of Scotland services my whole life, and I love the traditional format that brings such comfort to people. However, as I feel my faith growing, I’ve realised that, for me personally, the religion I see on a Sunday is no longer enough to fuel my faith.

As time goes on, I find my faith nurtured and growing by external forms of ‘church’. For example, I feel my faith grow worshipping with newer styles of Christian music and I love building relationships with different people within our community and within the schools.

Working for a church is a privilege and I enjoy my role as family worker greatly, but often I’m too busy working on enhancing the faith of others and as a result, my own faith can suffer.

In 2023, my new year’s resolution was to focus on my own faith more and to take opportunities to be discipled where I can. So I started a journalling bible, which has allowed me to study the word of God in my own way, in my own time, and with my own thoughts. I’ve also loved being part of our church’s praise band, where we have merged traditional and more recent Christian music together to adapt our worship style in church. Both these things seem like very little to enhance faith, but often it’s the little things that can help open your heart to Jesus.

On Christmas Day, 2021, I became a mum to my little boy, which in an instant enhanced my faith further. My journeys of both motherhood and faith are travelling hand in hand and now, more than ever, my faith has been at its most important for me. Not just to give me strength and patience for any sleepless nights, but also because I would love for my son to experience the same level of joy and love that I’ve experienced from being a Christian. I pray I can encourage him to seek faith in his own life and allow him to follow the path that Jesus has made and be enriched by the glory of God.