“Outside the box”—when applying for the Baptist Women in Ministry Mentoring Program in 2016, that was the option I checked on the application. I serve as the executive director of Lake Nixon Outdoor Center, a ministry of Second Baptist Church in Downtown Little Rock, Arkansas. I also serve as one of the ministers on staff. I have realized in my initial year in this new role with the church and Lake Nixon that this is definitely “out of the box” ministry. I love what I do and who I have the opportunity to serve with through this unique ministry, but I desired a community that would get the unusual nature of ministry and also get what being a woman in ministry is like day in and day out.

Fast forward a few months, and I was en route to Cullman, Alabama for the kick off retreat for those participating in the 2017 cohort of the BWIM Mentoring Program. I had no idea what to expect, but what came through those days of retreating together was special and unique. I am so grateful to the work of BWIM in orchestrating this opportunity for women in ministry to retreat together to then be sent back out into our communities and ministries with the support of those in our groups and the larger cohort community.

My Outside the Box mentoring group has been a vital support system to me in this initial year of ministry in a new and developing role. This group of devoted women in ministry has supported and continues to support me in ways both professionally and personally. I am grateful for their listening ears, profound wisdom shared, and the opportunity I have had to provide each and every member with prayers and support, too. I cannot imagine this year of ministry without the support of my fellow Outside the Box Baptist women in ministry. Thank you, BWIM, for providing this support.

Megan Pike is executive director of Lake Nixon Outdoor Center, Little Rock, Arkansas.

Applications for the 2018 Mentoring Cohorts are open now. Apply here!