Authentic Author and Passionate Servant— Cindy Johnson

cindywithkidsjpg.jpg
We are proud of our Young Life alumni who are passionately serving Jesus all over the world. This month we are pleased to introduce you to Young Life regional administrator, volunteer Capernaum leader and author, Cindy Johnson. Cindy was introduced to Young Life as a freshman at Biola University when she was invited to be a counselor to a cabin full of girls on a ski trip. This began seven years of volunteer service in Tustin, California. She then went on staff for two years and started WyldLife in a low-income, urban community. One of the reasons she chose to serve through Young Life was because she believes the ministry does a great job of highlighting the person of Christ and making the Gospel accessible to kids. “I am thankful for the ministry,” Cindy said, “because it has helped me develop a better picture of who Jesus is and allowed me to fall more in love with Him. Young Life’s commitment to put kids’ needs first and to earn the right to be heard has 

shaped my philosophy of ministry.”

After serving with Young Life, Cindy spent three years as a college pastor in Los Angeles, California. While in this role she encountered many young, single people who felt marginalized. “I was at the age where half of my friends were married and in a very different place than myself and my single friends. I was catching up on the phone with an old Young Life volunteer friend of mine who lives in the South and she expressed that she felt like the only young, unmarried person in her small town.    These experiences led me to realize that there is not a lot out there that authentically spoke to single women about navigating these waters.” So, while working in a full-time ministry position, volunteering with young people and maintaining an adventurous life, this passionate young woman began to write her first book, Who’s Picking Me Up from the Airport? The heart behind the book was to be a friend to those young people who feel “alone and weird and like the last one picked for dodge ball.” Her book confronts difficult situations and feelings with humor and biblical wisdom. “I just wanted to be honest, share my story and be a friend to my readers.”

The women with whom Cindy served in Young Life were a huge inspiration for her book. “I am so moved by the young, gifted, single women who give their time and energy to serve in ministry while maintaining their own lives. They are doing it on a single income without the support of a life partner.” Ministries are very intentional about honoring the couples and families who give their time to serve others and there are many events geared toward them. But Who’s Picking Me Up from the Airport? does a great job of highlighting the sacrifices that singles make for ministry and giving voice to some of the struggles they face. Cindy’s message to these people is: “First, you are not alone. Second, do not wait to live life until you’re married.” She also sees a huge opportunity for the church to step in and love the single people in their pews. With a laugh Cindy reminds us that “singleness is not a disease; we are adults and nothing is wrong with us.”
 
Two years ago, the Lord opened a door for Cindy to come back and serve as a regional administrator in Southern California. She has extensive experience serving in churches and non-profit organizations, but has been impressed by the way that Young Life takes care of its employees.  For Cindy, Young Life is an organization that she chooses to stand behind and serve long-term because it has given her life so much meaning. Cindy is a good example of someone God is using to love young people and an alumna who continues to serve the Young Life mission in multiple ways. She is dedicated to sharing the hope she has in Christ with those who feel alone in their struggles. You can read more about Cindy and her book here.