Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down with our staff Women’s Ministry support and Faith Formation associate, Cyndi Broersma. Being that October is “Women’s Ministry” month here at New Life, I wanted to find out more detail on the inner workings and heart behind this ministry. I always knew Cyndi to be a person of depth, but as we sat and chatted, I was taken back by the amount of heart and passion she displayed for the ministry areas in which she is involved. I also learned a few other interesting things about who she is and where she has come from. A couple of days after our interview, I was still thinking about some of the answers she gave to my questions.

So give us a brief overview of your life.

I grew up in a small town in southern Saskatchewan. When I was 14, I relocated to BC. My home was right here in the Fraser Valley area until I graduated from High School. After that, I moved a short distance to attended Western Pentecostal Bible College.

After Bible College, where did your path take you?

Well, I went to China for a year where I taught English in Macau; however, I was there during the handover of Macau back to China and was forced to leave. I then began teaching in Hoi Ping (mainland China) where it was illegal to be a Christian. I joined a missions team and cycled to many villages to spread the gospel. During my time in China I developed a love for missions and saw the need for medical care. When I came home I went to UCFV for nursing.

What kinds of places have you worked, where have you served and in what capacity?

The reason I went into nursing was to join the Red Cross and then go serve in war torn countries. However, I got married and started a family before I was able to serve out of the country. I have always wanted to be part of the healing journey for people both in a practical and also a spiritual way. I have compassion for those who are hurting, wounded, and sick. I’ve had many jobs where I served in both missions and health care locally.

Help us understand the heart behind what motivates you?

I love community. I believe that church is essentially the first form of government. We should be the hospital, the educators, those who provide financial aid for those in need, and those who care for those needing care. As for the role of women – in the Jewish tradition women had a powerful role in their families. They would actually sing proverbs over their children and grandchildren. I am passionate about seeing this same nurturing and loving spirit released in our community.

What is the greatest joy in the work that you do?

I live to see the “ah ha moment,” in a child. It is the freedom of identity that happens when all the loving and nurturing comes together, and in one moment, a child finally realizes who they are and who Jesus is to them. It is such a beautiful birth. But apart from that, I love to be part of redemption stories wherever they might happen. The greatest joy in my work is to celebrate the moments of breakthrough with those in my community.

What is the greatest joy in your personal life?

My relationship with Jesus is # 1, and then, without doubt, my family. I love spending time with my husband. I also learn so much from my kids. Kids teach you so much about compassion, patience, and kindness. When I see those qualities in them and I know that they really get what life is all about, it gives me a great deal of joy.

What are your greatest struggles, things that make you sad when you see them?

I am saddened when I see people not connected, all alone, and with no support. It breaks my heart to hear the phrase, “I had no one to cry with me.”

Tell us about your relationship with God, what is it like?

My relationship with God is beautiful and messy – sometimes I use the phrase, “perfectly-imperfect.” There have been a lot of struggles in my life, sometimes one right after the other, but there have also been a lot of open doors. I have come to realize that along with every open door is a mess so I always try to see the bigger picture. I believe that pain gives us a glimpse of eternity. My time with God looks like: silence, listening, dreaming, reading, and praying continually. There is never a time that my head is not in a conversation with God.

From your personal experience, if you could suggest one thing to another person when it comes to the pursuit of God, what would it be?

It’s not complicated …

What are your hobbies?

I love hiking, hunting, paddle boarding, reading, and a very little known fact – crocheting! I am also very competitive and I love fitness.

What are the practicalities of Women’s Connection at New Life?

For the Tuesday morning Women’s Connections, there are three semesters each year. The first semester is 12 weeks long and runs September through December. The second one runs from January through March. Then we also have a shorter spring session in April and May running for about 5 weeks. In each semester, there are a variety of sessions or groups. When the semester changes, most of the groups switch over to a new topic. There is also a Wednesday night Women’s Connection group that meets. The topics for the Wednesday night gathering are consistent throughout the year. For the most part, whichever event you attend, you can expect a time of worship, caring, small groups, and prayer, and there is always child care available on Tuesday mornings.

What is your heart for New Life women’s ministries?

My heart is that the women of our church would be able to find their identity in Christ and feel connected – part of a unit. Our goal is that each woman would have support, someone to rejoice with, and, if needed, someone to mourn with. I never want anyone to feel like they have to struggle alone, and if someone is excited, there should always be someone to share the joy with. I also pray that they feel empowered to lead at home and to serve in their community.

If you could say one thing to the ladies of New Life, what would it be?

You are valued and treasured more than you could ever imagine. You can never fully know how much God loves you and He created you perfectly – imperfect.