Welcome to our Circle of Influence article series!

As we recognize LifePoint’s 35th anniversary, we are celebrating the ripple effect of more than three decades of influence in and through the people of LifePoint. We’ve chosen several unique stories to share.

 

Part 2: Dennis & Renee Perez

If you ask Renee Perez what she enjoys most about serving in the Woman’s Ministry at LifePoint, she’ll tell you that it’s the cross generational quality within the group.

“When I served as a discussion group leader with MOPS, the focus was on women in a particular stage of life.  But with the women’s ministry, I love the opportunity to serve women in all stages of life and to help foster connections between these women.”

If you ask her husband Dennis the same question about the men’s ministry, he’ll jokingly tell you it’s the bacon.

“The first men’s event I was invited to was by Joe Pascal and I just remember he promised me that there would be bacon there.  That was good enough for me.”

But if you ask those that the Perezes serve, the answers will be a direct reflection of the love that Renee and Dennis invest into their roles.

“Renee is tender, compassionate and sensitive to the needs of those around her. The women adore her involvement,” notes Lorrie Ruth, Renee’s former Bible study small group leader.  Lorrie has been thrilled to see Renee step into her faith more fully over the years. “She is touching women’s lives.  She has touched my heart without even knowing it.”

Chuck Kinney met Dennis Perez years ago in a men’s small group.  Over the years they have become, as Chuck describes it: “brothers, mentors, and friends.” Chuck notes that among Dennis’ many gifts, his “sincerity, transparency, authenticity, and humbleness” have made the biggest impact on his life.  Dennis understands that a large part of walking in discipleship is to make disciples and serves to lead others to want to know Christ.  “I am growing as a leader myself because of [Dennis’] influence,” says Chuck.

While the personal and individual impact that the Perezes are making cannot be underestimated, in ministries as large as the Woman’s and Men’s ministries, it’s also a vital part of the Perezes’ involvement to connect LifePointers with one another.  Renee leads the T2 Women’s Mentoring Program at LifePoint.  She says that “In mentoring, I see women finding a bond that is unique and timely. Each relationship shows Titus 2 being lived out in real time.”

When Leah Anderson was expecting her second child, she was anxious about the transition.  After hearing about the T2 Women’s Mentoring Program in her MOPS group, she signed up to be mentored.  Renee, who heads the ministry, matched Leah with mentor Andrea Phillips.

“Renee did a wonderful job of matching us,” says Andrea.  “Leah and I were very similar, just in different stages of life as my children were a little older.  I was able to reassure her, stock her freezer for after the birth, and prepare busy boxes for her young toddler.  Renee was so helpful throughout our mentorship, checking in frequently to see if we needed anything.  I’m so glad that LifePoint has someone like her in charge of this important ministry.”

For as good as Renee is in her role, it wasn’t a change that came easily.  Lorrie, who gave Renee her first opportunity in a leadership role, notes that the first time she asked Renee to lead, “She hesitated.  I could tell I might have asked her to support something outside of her comfort zone.”

Renee herself admits that after years of being a full-time mother to her three small boys, she herself wondered if she had the confidence needed to lead.   But she knew that she could trust in God’s abilities even if she couldn’t trust her own.  She also appreciated the support she got from the people at LifePoint.  “It allowed me to let go of the pressure of perfection.  If something was unclear, I could just ask.”

For Dennis, the influence of men at LifePoint like Keith Jarrin also supported his desire to serve.  Keith demonstrated a commitment to contributing to community that inspired Dennis to do the same.  

In the Men’s Ministry, Dennis has seen men realize their responsibility to be spiritual leaders and make movement to fulfill on that as they walk with Jesus.  He has seen men become more intentional in all the spheres of influence God has uniquely placed them in.  And most rewarding, he has seen men embrace a personal relationship with Christ spurring them to serve their community and teach others to do the same. According to Chuck: “Because [Dennis] practices loving me as Christ does, I grow to practice loving others in the same way.”

By showing compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience within their leadership roles, Dennis and Renee aren’t only teaching what is good.  They are encouraging a community of believers to love one another the way that God loves us.

 

 

Meeting Where They Are

Welcome to our Circle of Influence article series! As we recognize LifePoint's 35th anniversary, we are celebrating the ripple effect of more than three decades of influence in and through the people of LifePoint. We've chosen several unique stories to share.  ...

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Welcome to our Circle of Influence article series! As we recognize LifePoint's 35th anniversary, we are celebrating the ripple effect of more than three decades of influence in and through the people of LifePoint. We've chosen several unique stories to share.  ...

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